The Centre on Thursday approved Rs.1,100 crore for purchase of hi-tech equipment for the National Intelligence Grid, cleared by the Cabinet last year. The NATGRID will pool information from 21 categories of database including rail and air travel, income tax, bank account details, credit card transactions and visa and immigration records for ready access by intelligence agencies.
The Cabinet Committee on Security, which met under the leadership of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, gave its nod for the NATGRID proposal for acquisition of technological items mentioned in the Detailed Project Report, Home Minister P. Chidambaram said. The NATGRID was conceptualised as a constantly evolving tool that would mature over several horizons with additional functionalities and enhancements over a period of time.
The NATGRID was conceptualised after the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks to facilitate robust information sharing by security and law enforcement agencies. It will give 11 agencies — including the RAW, the IB, the ED, the National Investigation Agency, the CBI, the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence and the Narcotics Control Bureau — access to the combined data.