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Modi: UPA has made mockery of terror law

Modi: UPA has made mockery of terror law

Author: Special Correspondent
Publication: The Asian Age
Date: January 7, 2009

Leading the charge of NDA chief ministers, Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday attacked the UPA government for setting up the National Investigation Agency, saying that its constitution was contrary to the country's federal spirit and an attempt at "sidetracking" the states in the fight against terror.

Speaking at the two-day national conference on terrorism, Mr Modi said, "By setting up the NIA, the Central government now obviously wants to take over upon itself the responsibility of fighting terror by sidetracking the states."

Mr Modi stated that the UPA government has made a mockery of the anti-terror law as confessions before the police were not taken as evidence. "How will Pakistan accept our testimony when our own law does not accept Mumbai blasts accused Kasab's confession as evidence?" he asked.

Though he offered his government's support in the fight against terrorism, he said that the need of the hour was a tough Pota-like anti-terror law. He said had Kasab been caught in Gujarat, the law of the land could hardly deal with him strongly because of non-existence of a stringent act.

He pointed out that his state had sent GUJCOCA for the Centre's approval but the government had not taken a decision on the law. Mr Modi also called for the creation of an all-India cadre of intelligence based on the lines of the Indian Police Service. He also suggested that the Centre should develop one of the small states as a model to fight terrorism.

Continuing Mr Modi's charge against the Centre, MP chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan stressed on the urgent need to introduce national identity cards for all citizens to combat terror.

"We need to stop vote bank politics and prevent Bangladeshi migrants from entering our country. It will be effective in curbing heinous crimes, other than keeping a check on terrorism," he said.

Mr Chouhan said the Centre should have consulted states before bringing in Central legislations against terrorism. "There have been no terror related incidences in Madhya Pradesh. But there are many challenges in front of the state government to combat terrorism-like concerns," he said.

While speaking at the conclave, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar also stated that NIA should be barred from taking up any case not relating to terrorism without the consent of the state government.

Mr Kumar pointed out that though the new laws appeared to be dealing with the defence and security of the country, "a deeper analysis leaves no doubt that in their application, these laws virtually deal with public order, law and order and policing".

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