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Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan urges Union Government to consult states before policy-related decisions

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By Pervez Bari


New Delhi: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has urged the Union Government that states should be consulted before policy-related decisions and enactment of new laws instead of getting drafts prepared on the basis of draft proposals of voluntary organisations and other people and sending the same for State Governments’ remarks. He said the unilateral amendment to Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act is its example.


Mr. Chouhan said that it is being observed for past some time that the Union Government is taking unilateral decisions on several internal security issues, be it constitution of NCTC to be implemented in other parts of the country or proposed amendments to BSF Act and CRPF Act. He said that even in a matter as sensitive as Targeted Communal Violence Act, efforts were being made to introduce the Bill in the Parliament without consulting all the stakeholders. He described it as a step towards centralization and against the spirit of federalism enshrined in the constitution. He said that such laws should be enacted only after general consensus of all the sections of society and political parties.


Chief Minister Mr. Chouhan was addressing Chief Ministers’ Conference on internal security here on Monday. The conference was presided over by Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh. Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Mr. Umashankar Gupta was also present on the occasion.
Mr. Chouhan has said that internal security cannot be strengthened without strengthening states. He said that state government should be consulted before policy-making and enacting new laws. Besides, open and serious discussions on internal security should be made by the Union Home Minister with states’ Home Ministers in every quarter. The Chief Minister said that with a view to making state-level anti-terrorist units effective and upgrading them, the Union Government should bear expenses for first five years on their constitution, training and resources.


He said that the Union Government should undertake the work of strengthening state governments’ anti-terrorism campaigns and institutions linked with them on a large scale and in a controlled manner. He demanded more financial resources from the Union Government for removing shortage of forces and resources in states.


Mr. Chouhan stated that the Centre and States have jointly countered left wing extremisms successfully. He urged the Union Government should declare nine districts of Madhya Pradesh as affected by left wing extremism and include them in SRE/SIS. Terrorism can also be countered with the same model. He said that ATS was constituted in Madhya Pradesh as early as 2008. It has been successful in nabbing 151 terrorists in 14 districts of the state during the last four years. He said that biggest action against dangerous organisations like SIMI was taken in Madhya Pradesh.


He demanded that expenses on making state-level anti-terrorist units more effective should be borne by the Union Government for the first five years of their constitution, training and resources.


Mr. Chouhan said that Special Branch Training School of Madhya Pradesh should be strengthened and accorded the status of an academy. He also demanded that nine districts of Madhya Pradesh should be declared as affected by Leftist extremism. The Chief Minister also urged the Union Government to give early approval to Madhya Pradesh Terrorist and Disruptive Activities and Organised Crime Control Act 2010 passed by state Vidhan Sabha for effective action against terrorist activities and organised crimes.


Mr. Chouhan said that strength of police force has been increased by 13,979 during past years in the state with a view to dealing with growing challenges. A decision has been taken to create about 2,500 additional posts every year in ratio to population rise. Police training schools have been opened and arrangement of Rs. 30 crore is being made every year for equipping the police with modern resources. Rs. 113 crore has been provided to the police by making the department as part of State Plan.


He informed that 331 new posts have been created for strengthening intelligence wing in the state. Employees of the wing are being imparted special training by activating Special Branch Training School. He said that intelligence wing officers from states should also be included in the training programmes of various Central agencies. He laid stress on early approval to Madhya Pradesh Terrorist and Disruptive Activities and Organised Crime Control Act 2010 passed by Madhya Pradesh Vidhan Sabha for effective action against terrorist activities and organised crime.


Mr. Chouhan informed that Special Courts Act has been implemented in the state for prompt action in the cases of corrupt government servants and confiscate the assets amassed by them through corrupt practices. He informed that efforts have also been made in the state for getting criminal punished at the earliest. At the initiative of the state government, heinous and serious crimes are placed under the category of selected crimes. Monitoring of such cases’ investigation is made a higher level and their challans are put up before courts within 30 days. Its results are already showing. The Special Investigation Units are also going to be set up in the state.


He said that Forest Act is coming in the way of development of tribal and redressal of their problems. There is need to review its rules. Provisions should be made under IAP for police modernisation.


He informed that the state has constituted Cyber Cell in the year 2008. Cyber Cell Police Station at the state level will be sanctioned soon. He laid stress that the Union Government should provide Rs. 100 crore to the state for police modernisation. He also demanded special financial assistance for houses of police personnel.


[Pervez Bari is a senior Journalist based at Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Madhya Pradesh). He can be contacted at pervezbari@eth.net]
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