National Investigation Agency Current Affairs - 2019

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Supreme Court issues notice to Centre on PIL against notification under IT Act

The Supreme Court has issued a notice to the Central government on PIL which questioned the notification authorising 10 central agencies to intercept, monitor and decrypt any computer system.

What was the notification?

Under the notification, the central government had empowered 10 agencies, Intelligence Bureau, Narcotics Control Bureau, Enforcement Directorate, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (for Income Tax Department), Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, Central Bureau of Investigation, National Investigation Agency, the Research and Analysis Wing, Directorate of Signal Intelligence (in service areas of J-K, North East and Assam) and Delhi Police commissioner to intercept, monitor and decrypt any computer system.

PIL challenges the Notification

The notification is challenged on the following grounds:

  • The notification was illegal, unconstitutional and ultra vires to the law.
  • The notification gives State the right to access every communication, computer and mobile and to use it to protect the political interest and object of the present executive political party.
  • The notification was an attempt to create a surveillance state.

The PIL also sought to prohibit the agencies from initiating any criminal proceedings, enquiry or investigation against anybody under the provisions of the IT Act based on the notification. The Supreme Court issuing a notice to the central government and has asked to respond in six weeks.

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YC Modi appointed as DG of NIA

The Appointment Committee of Cabinet (ACC) has appointed senior IPS officer YC Modi as Director-General (DG) of National Investigation Agency (NIA). He will succeed Sharad Kumar.

Mr. Modi is IPS officer of 1984 batch of the Assam-Meghalaya cadre. Prior to this appointment he was special director in the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). He was part of special investigation team on 2002 Gujarat riot cases appointed by Supreme Court when incumbent Prime Minister Narendra Modi was Chief Minister of  State.

National Investigation Agency (NIA)

NIA is Central Counter terrorism Law Enforcement Agency established to combat terrorism and terror financing. It was established with enactment of NIA Act, 2008 after 2008 Mumbai terror attacks. It aims to match best international standards in counter terrorism and other national security related investigations at national level by developing into a highly trained, partnership oriented workforce.

The agency has concurrent jurisdiction to deal with terror related crimes across states without obtaining special permission from states. Apart from covering terror offences that threatens sovereignty and integrity of country, it also probes offences counterfeit currency, human trafficking, organized crime, violations of atomic energy act etc.

Special Courts: Various Special Courts have been established under Section 11 and 22 of NIA Act 2008 for speedy trail of cases registered at various police stations of NIA. Central government decides any question as to jurisdiction of these courts. These special courts are capable of trying only those offences committed under its jurisdiction.

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