Ibobi supports NCTC, stresses human rights angle

New Delhi, May 5: Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh Saturday termed the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) a credible step towards institutional capability to counter terrorist forces but stressed the need to care for the human rights of citizens while setting it up.

“We, in Manipur, are facing a serious internal security challenge posed by a multitude of militant groups indulging in subversive and anti-national activities and terrorising out people for extortions, kidnappings for ransom and so on.

“In the given internal security scenario, the role of intelligence and an institutionalised and effective means of generating and sharing intelligence on a real time basis is an absolute necessity,” he said, speaking at the conference of chief ministers here.

Ibobi Singh however added that it is also the government’s duty to protect the basic human rights while granting unbounded powers to arrest under section 43A of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

The Manipur chief minister suggested that the NCTC officials should share the intelligence with the state police and carry out operations for arresting and detaining any person suspected of indulging in terrorist activities.

However, the person arrested should be handed over to the nearest police station and interrogated jointly, he suggested.

Ibobi Singh also suggested that in case of any investigation, the primary responsibility should remain that of the state government and that all such operations should be undertaken jointly with the state police.

He also endorsed the proposal to constitute a standing council with representation from all the states.

“As laid out, it would be able to evolve ways and means to ensure coordination of all counter terrorism measures and synergy in response. Setting-up of Special Teams to pursue specific -intelligence inputs or targets involving more than one state would be useful when dealing with organisations active across state borders,” he added.