Current Affairs
Explained

NATGRID

  • Posted By
    10Pointer
  • Categories
    Polity & Governance
  • Published
    15th Jul, 2020
  • Context

    MOU has been signed between National intelligence grid (NATGRID) & National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) to access the centralised online database on FIRs and stolen vehicles.

  • Background

    • The MoU will give NATGRID access to the Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) database, a platform that links around 14,000 police stations.
    • All State police are mandated to file First Information Reports (FIR) in the CCTNS.
    • The MoU enables the NATGRID to get information about details of a suspect as mentioned in the FIR such as his/her father’s name, telephone number and other details.
    • The CCTNS is a project for creating a comprehensive and integrated system for effective policing through e-Governance.
  • WHAT is NATGRID?

    • It’s a one-stop destination for security and intelligence agencies to access database related to immigration entry and exit, banking and telephone details of a suspect on a “secured platform”.
    • Formed in the year 2009.
    • NATGRID is exempted from the Right to Information Act, 2005 under sub-section (2) of Section 24.
  • Who can access the data?

    • It can be accessed by the 10 Central agencies such as the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW).
    • The data will be procured by NATGRID from 21 providing organisations such as the telecom, tax records, bank, immigration etc.
  • Why NATGRID is facing opposition/criticism?

    • It is due to possible violations of privacy and leakage of confidential personal information.
    • State agency or police force having no access to its database thus reducing chances of immediate, effective action.
    • Chance of it getting misused. Over the last two decades, the very digital tools that terrorists use have also become great weapons to fight the ideologies of violence.
    • Intelligence agencies have also opposed amid fears that it would impinge on their territory and possibly result in leaks on the leads they were working on to other agencies.
  • Why do we need NATGRID?

    • The danger from not having a sophisticated tool like the NATGRID is that it forces the police to rely on harsh and coercive means to extract information in a crude and degrading fashion.
    • After every terrorist incident, it goes about rounding up suspects—many of who are innocent. If, instead, a pattern search and recognition system were in place, these violations of human rights would be much fewer.
    • Natgrid would also help the Intelligence Bureau keep a tab on persons with suspicious backgrounds.
    • The police would have access to all his data and any movement by this person would also be tracked with the help of this data base.