Discuss the rationale behind government's decision to include the National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO) under the Intelligence Organisations (Restriction of Rights) Act, 1985.
The National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO), which reports to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and the National Security Advisor (NSA) is brought under the Intelligence Organisations (Restriction of Rights) Act, 1985.
Functions of NTRO
- The NTRO acts as the primary advisor on security issues to the Prime Minister and the Union Council of Ministers of India.
- It also provides technical intelligence to other Indian agencies.
- NTRO’s activities include satellite and terrestrial monitoring.
- NTRO is also charged with developing technology relevant to Indian national security and intelligence. These technologies include cryptology, cybersecurity and data management.
NTRO id bestowed with key responsibility in the internal security of the country. Thus there was a demand to bring NTRO under the Intelligence Organisations (Restriction of Rights) Act, 1985.
Rationale behind this
- The NTRO will now have powers similar to the Intelligence Bureau and the Research and Analysis Wing.
- It will bring greater accountability and responsibility on the officers of NTRO and will aid in ensuring that officials do not leak out information and embarrass the government or compromise on national security.
- The act will now prevent the employees of NTRO from forming unions/associations, bars them from communicating with the press or publishing a book or other document without permission of the head of the intelligence organisation.
The NTRO was created after the 1999 Kargil conflict as a dedicated technical intelligence agency. Bringing of NTRO under the act will aid in upholding the sanctity of the organisation and also strengthening of internal security organisation of the country.