BHUBANESWAR: Close on the heels of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik writing to the Centre calling for a review of the Home Ministry order on the formation of National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has demanded its withdrawal.
The Chief Minister’s Office on Thursday circulated a copy of the letter written by Mamata to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with an obvious intention to put pressure on the Centre to rethink on creation of the anti-terror agency.
Terming the Ministry order to set up NCTC an infringement on federal rights of the states, Mamata said, "Any decision which infringes power and rights of the state governments should be taken after adequate consultation and with the consent of the states.’’
"It will be difficult for the State Government to accept such arbitrary exercise of powers by the Centre which have bearing on the rights and privileges of the state as enshrined in the Constitution,’’ she cautioned. Mamata’s letter to the Prime Minister came a day after Naveen spoke to her over telephone.
Meanwhile, Naveen has taken up the issue with his Tamil Nadu counterpart J Jayalalithaa requesting her to oppose such a move by the UPA Government. Naveen has been mobilising support from his Bihar counterpart Nitish Kumar and former Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu too. In his letter to Prime Minister, Naveen had pointed out that the anti-terror agency, constituted in the Intelligence Bureau (IB), and the powers vested in it appear to be an infringement on the powers of state governments in matters of investigation and maintenance of order.
He had urged the Prime Minister to review the matter before operationalisation of the NCTC from March 1.