Steps to prevent and tackle communal violence will be discussed threadbare at the National Integration Council meeting convened here on Monday against the backdrop of Muzaffarnagar riots that has claimed 48 lives.

The NIC, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, will deliberate upon the measures taken to promote communal harmony, role of social networking sites in promoting national integration and ways of tackling hate propaganda.

According to the agenda, the 148-member NIC will discuss among other issues safety and security of women, confidence- building measures taken to tackle communal disturbances and taking help from all sections of society in removing communal tension.

Union ministers, Leaders of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, chief ministers of all states and Union Territories are members of the NIC. Leaders of national and regional political parties, chairpersons of national commissions, eminent journalists, public figures and representatives of business and women’s organisations are also part of NIC.

The proposed Communal Violence Bill, opposed by some states as it envisages empowering the central government to send central forces unilaterally in case of communal disturbances, is also expected to be discussed in the meeting.

Steps taken to tackle crimes against SCs/STs, associating all sections of society in removing inter-caste tension will also be discussed in the day-long meeting convened after two years.

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