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How National Investigation Agency (NIA) was formed?

Updated: Oct 14, 2022

When India has other agencies such as the CBI, RAW, IB or the police and the central military forces, then why we need the NIA?

We saw movies like Batla House, Holiday, 26/11 Mumbai attacks film, Black Friday and also the recent arrest of people associated with PFI that is the Popular Front of India by the NIA. What were the reasons that the need for such an agency was felt?

What is National Investigation Agency?

The NIA is the central counter-terrorism law enforcement agency in the country created in the year 2008 after the Mumbai terror attacks, known as 26/11.

The need to form such a force was felt after it was realized that there is a need for a separate entity that could look only after the terrorism in the nation and prevent the future attacks.

Image source - Internet

Need of NIA (Source

India has been the victim of large scale terrorism sponsored from across the borders.

There have been innumerable incidents of terrorist attacks, not only in the militancy and insurgency affected areas and areas affected by Left Wing Extremism, but also in the form of terrorist attacks and bomb blasts, etc., in various parts of the hinterland and major cities, etc. A large number of such incidents are found to have complex inter-State and international linkages, and possible connection with other activities like the smuggling of arms and drugs, pushing in and circulation of fake Indian currency, infiltration from across the borders, etc.

The Government after due consideration and examination of the issues involved, proposed to enact a legislation to make provisions for establishment of a National Investigation Agency in a concurrent jurisdiction framework, with provisions for taking up specific cases under specific Acts for investigation.

Powers of NIA and comparison with CBI

  • The NIA Act was enacted on 31 December 2008 and the National Investigation Agency (NIA) was born. At present NIA is functioning as the Central Counter Terrorism Law Enforcement Agency in India.

  • NIA has registered and investigated 315 cases as on date i.e. 05 February 2020. After submission of charge sheets, 60 cases have been finally or partially decided in trial. Of these, 54 cases have ended in conviction giving NIA an enviable conviction percentage of 90%.

  • State government authorities can request an investigation by NIA upon approval of Central government within the limits of law specified under the NIA Act.

  • The NIA can investigate terror cases across the country without having to get permission from the states. For example the CBI has to take consent of the state government before investigating the case in the area but NIA does not.

  • It aims to act as a deterrent for existing and potential terrorists, and maintains a database on terrorism while CBI deals with corruption, economic offences, cyber crimes and special crimes.

  • NIA is headquartered in New Delhi and has 8 regional offices across India while CBI has 72 units in 38 branches in 28 states.

  • NIA functions under the Ministry of Home Affairs while the CBI functions under the Department of Personnel, ministry of Personnel, Pension & Public Grievances. Also to add, CBI is not a statutory body as it derives its powers from Delhi police establishment Act of 1946, which was enacted by British to check the corruption during World War 2.

  • After the amendment in 2019 in the NIA Act, the jurisdiction of the NIA was expanded. Now, it has the authority to investigate offences that are committed outside Indian territory subject to international treaties and domestic laws of other nations and allows the central government to constitute Special Courts to conduct trials of scheduled offences.

National Investigation Agency (NIA) – Regional Offices

  • NIA Hyderabad

  • NIA Guwahati

  • NIA Kochi

  • NIA Lucknow

  • NIA Mumbai

  • NIA Kolkata

  • NIA Raipur

  • NIA Jammu

India has been attacked by outside forces in sync with the people of inside India as well as outside. There are numerous instances such as the blasts of 1991 in Mumbai, Bomb blasts in Gujarat, UP, Delhi etc. Amid this the NIA maintains the list of most wanted. It acts as a special and devoted entity to counter the crimes that needs special intelligence and training apart from the local police and other bodies.

stay tuned for more..




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