New Delhi: Trying to allay apprehensions of BJP and some state governments, the Centre has decided to drop several provisions in the controversial communal violence bill to ensure that it is neutral to all communities and also reduce the role of the central government in case of riots.
Home Ministry sources said the fresh initiative to amend the provisions of the draft `Prevention of Communal and Targeted Violence (Access to Justice and Reparations) Bill, 2013` has been taken in the wake of criticism by BJP, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her Tamil Nadu counterpart J Jayalalithaa of the controversial legislation.
The draft bill is now made neutral to all groups or communities and the central government will not have any alleged over riding powers anywhere.
Earlier the bill specifically mentioned that the onus of riots lies on the majority community.
Sources claimed the bill is not hitting the federal structure of the country and central government`s role will largely be of coordination and will act only when the state government seeks help.
The fresh draft says, "If the state government is of the opinion that assistance of the central government is required for controlling the communal violence, it may seek the assistance of the central government to deploy armed forces of the Union for such purposes..."
Earlier, the Centre was given unilateral powers to send central paramilitary forces in case of communal violence without consulting the state government.