National Intelligence Grid ( NATGRID)

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    • Prime Minister Narendra Modi is soon expected to launch the National Intelligence Grid or NATGRID.

    Earlier MOU in this context 

    • MOU between NATGRID & National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB)
      • NATGRID has signed a memorandum of understanding(MoU) in July 2020 with the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) to access the centralised online database on FIRs and stolen vehicles.
    • It aimed to provide a “cutting-edge technology to enhance India’s counter-terror capabilities.
    • It also aimed to provide NATGRID access to the Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) database, a platform that links around 14,000 police stations as all State police are mandated to file First Information Reports (FIR) in the CCTNS

    About National Intelligence Grid (NATGRID):

    • Origin:
      • The project initially started in 2009 after the Mumbai terrorist attack with a budget of ?2,800 crores. 
      • The 26/11 terrorist siege in Mumbai back in 2008 exposed the deficiency that security agencies had no mechanism to look for vital information on a real-time basis.
    • It is conceptualised as a seamless and secure database for information on terrorists, economic crimes and similar incidents to help bolster India’s capabilities.
      • It has been envisaged as a robust mechanism to track suspects and prevent terrorist attacks with real-time data and access to classified information like immigration, banking, individual taxpayers, air and train travel.
    • Features:
      • It is an online database for collating scattered pieces of information and putting them together on one platform.
      • It links intelligence and investigation agencies and is exempted from the Right to Information Act, 2005 under sub-section (2) of Section 24.
      • It will utilise technologies like Big Data and data analytics to study and analyse the huge amounts of data from various intelligence and enforcement agencies to help track suspects in various cases as required. 
      • It is intending to set up an Entity Extraction, Visualization, and Analytics (EVA) system.
    • Mandate:
      •  It is mandated with a counter-terrorism measure that collects and collates a host of information from government databases including tax and bank account details, credit card transactions, visa and immigration records, itineraries of Rail and air travel etc. 
    • First Phase:  
      • According to the first phase plan, 10 user agencies and 21 service providers will be connected with the NATGRID, while in later phases, about 950 additional organisations will be brought on board. 
    • In the following years, more than 1,000 organisations will be further integrated into the NATGRID.
      • These data sources include records related to immigration entry and exit, banking and financial transactions and telecommunications.
      • Prominent federal agencies of the country have been authorised to access the NATGRID database.
        • They are the Central Bureau of Investigation, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, the Enforcement Directorate, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (for the Income Tax Department), the Cabinet Secretariat, the Intelligence Bureau, the Directorate General of GST Intelligence, the Narcotics Control Bureau, the Financial Intelligence Unit, and the National Investigation Agency.
          • The “furnishing and receiving of information to and from” these central agencies will be done through the National Intelligence Grid.

    Source: TH