NATIONAL INVESTIGATION AGENCY
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) was constituted under the National Investigation Agency (NIA) Act, 2008.
• It is a central agency to investigate and prosecute offences:
• It implements international treaties, agreements, conventions and resolutions of the United Nations, its agencies and other international organisations.
• Its objective is also to combat terror in India.
• Headquarters: New Delhi
Goals of NIA
Need of NIA
• The terrorist incidents are found to have complex inter-State and international linkages, and possible connection with organised crime, for example, the smuggling of arms and drugs, circulation of fake Indian currency etc.
Mandate of NIA
• The cases are assigned to the NIA by the Central Government in accordance with section VI of the NIA Act, 2008.
• The NIA (Amendment) Bill 2019 was passed by Parliament amending the original Act of 2008.
• The Bill seeks to allow the NIA to investigate the following additional offences:
• Jurisdiction of the NIA
• The Central Government for the trial of Scheduled Offences, constitute one or more Special Courts under Section 11 and 22 of the NIA Act 2008.
• Composition: Special Court shall be presided over by a judge to be appointed by the Central Government on the recommendation of the Chief Justice of the High Court. o The Central Government may, if required, appoint an additional judge or additional judges to the Special Court, on the recommendation of the Chief Justice of the High Court.
• Jurisdiction of Special Courts:
The Special Courts have all powers of the court of sessions under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.
The Supreme Court can transfer a case pending before a Special Court to any other Special Court within that State or any other State in some exceptional cases where it is not feasible to conduct a peaceful, fair, impartial and speedy trial.
Similarly, the High Court has the power to transfer a case pending before a Special Court in a State to any other Special Court within that State.
Issues in the Recent Amendments
• Under schedule VII of the Constitution, the maintenance of public order and police forces are matters of state list.
• The Central government gets the authority to have the NIA take over the investigation of crimes, which involve allegations of human trafficking, offences under the Explosives Act, and certain offences under the Arms Act.
• The Amendment Bill puts Section 66F of the Information Technology Act into the Schedule listing offences.
• The amendment to the NIA Act also gives the agency authority to investigate crimes committed by persons which are against Indian citizens or “affecting the interest of India”.