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Gujarat needs MCOCA-type law to deal with terror: Modi

Onkar Singh in New Delhi | September 03, 2008 19:11 IST

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi [Images] made a rare appearance at a Bharatiya Janata Party press conference in New Delhi [Images] on Wednesday, along with the party's prime ministerial candidate L K Advani [Images].

He lamented that the Centre was sitting over his proposal to enact a Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act-type law in Gujarat. Such a law gives the state government a wide range of powers to deal with terrorist activities, he said.

Modi meets PM, insists on anti-terror law

"We had incorporated suggestions of the court and sent it to the union government for presidential assent, but the proposal has been gathering dust for the last four years," he said.

Modi claimed that he had raised the point with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] several times, even after the Ahmedabad [Images] serial blasts, but nothing has come of the PM's assurances on the matter.

How Modi's police cracked the blasts case

According to Modi, the names involved in the Ahmedabad serial blasts would shock the nation. "So far, 15 persons have been arrested from nine states. Earlier, it was terrorism from across the border but now it is sponsored terrorism. Money comes from outside and it is used in India. Police officers from all parts of the country have asked for our assistance," he said.

 Complete coverage: The Ahmedabad blasts

He denied recent reports that the United States had again refused to grant him a visa. "There are lobbies in India and USA which tarnish my name. They were active when I held a valid visa and the US Embassy cancelled it on someone's instigation. The same lobby is active again, particularly when I have not even sought a visa," Modi clarified.

The controversial chief minister indicated that Tata might shift their Nano plant to Gujarat. "Our association dates back to four hundred years. Gujarat has the maximum area earmarked for special economic zones, but there has never been a problem,' he declared.

No visa for Narendra Modi, says US

When a journalist asked him how he had managed that, Modi quipped that this was one secret he would not share with journalists.

Speaking at the conference, Advani once again demanded that Afzal Guru, the main accused in the Parliament attack case, be hanged.

 Coverage: Attack on Parliament

He claimed that the government had enough material on the Students Islamic Movement of India to bring out a white paper on the banned outfit. "The investigations done by the Gujarat police have brought out the real objective of the SIMI [Images], which has time and again affirmed its intention of establishing a Muslim Caliphate," Advani claimed.

Exclusive: What SIMI chief told the police

He slammed legislators who had visited the residence of Abu Bashir, the main accused in the Ahmedabad blasts.

"They are playing vote bank politics. It is distressing that leaders of the Congress and like- minded parties went to the extent of visiting a village in Azamgarh to express their sympathy and solidarity for the perpetrator of Ahmedabad blasts, who had been arrested from that village. The government should take all measures to choke the channels of terrorists funding, and the central government should apologise to the people for not being able to protect them," he thundered.

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