People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 09

February 26, 2012

 Tripura CM writes to PM on NCTC


The following is the text of the letter written by Manik Sarkar, chief minister of Tripura to Manmohan Singh, prime minister, regarding the National Counter Terrorism Centre, on February 18, 2012


I would like to draw your kind attention to the “National Counter Terrorism Centre (Organisation, Functions, Power and Duties) Order, 2012” issued by the ministry of home affairs (MHA) on February 3, 2012, vide which the MHA has constituted a National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), located in the Intelligence Bureau (IB). The director of the NCTC has been made as the ‘Designated Authority’ under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 and the officers of NCTC have been given the powers to arrest and to search under the said act. The NCTC has also been given the power to set up Inter-State Intelligence Support Teams. Considering that ‘Public Order’ and ‘Police’ is a state subject under the constitution of India, this action of the MHA amounts to encroachment upon the powers of the states. What is unfortunate and surprising is that while the issues are very much related to the states, the very order has been issued without any consultation with the state governments!


2. Needless to mention, all of us are fully committed to counter the menace of terrorism in the country. You are aware about the manner in which terrorism has been brought under control in Tripura through the proactive efforts made by the state government with active support of the peace-loving people of the state and obviously, of course, duly supported by the central government. The need of the hour is that the centre and the states should work together to effectively counter the terrorism and other divisive forces. The unilateral order issued by the MHA will only create misunderstanding between the centre and the states and will defeat the very purpose for which it has been issued.


3. The federal structure of our country is the basic feature of the constitution of India and it is the responsibility of the centre to preserve the same. I am pained to mention that of late, there has been a trend to violate this basic structure of our constitution, which needs to be discouraged.


4. In view of the above, I would request you to advise the ministry of home affairs to withdraw the NCTC Order, 2012 and to initiate a process of wider consultations with all the states to evolve an appropriate mechanism for effectively dealing with the menace of terrorism in the country.