NEWDELHI: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will not attend Chief Ministers’ meeting on internal security to be chaired by the Prime Minister here on Monday.
The controversial National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) is on the agenda in the meeting. Many non-Congress ruled states including Banerjee, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar have opposed the NCTC alleging that in its present form it amounts to infringement of the states’ powers.
They have also made clear that they want a separate meeting on the proposed anti-terror agency, as the meeting on Monday will not have enough time to deliberate on the proposed anti-terror body.
However, apart from Banerjee, other opposing Chief Ministers will attend the meeting on Monday. It is understood that they agreed to attend the meeting after Home Minister P Chidambaram wrote to them saying that NCTC will be discussed at a separate meeting on May 5. Banerjee has not given any reason for her absence from the meet but sources close to her said she would be attending the meeting on May 5.
In place of Banerjee, Finance Minister Amit Mitra will represent the state government. Other agenda in the meeting will be police reforms and capacity-building with focus on ongoing and new initiatives.