Amit Shah, the most powerful BJP leader after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, took charge for the second time as the Union Home Minister on Tuesday. The immediate task cut out for him is rolling out the three new criminal laws from July 1, ensure timely elections to local bodies and Assembly in Jammu and Kashmir, and bringing peace back in Manipur.

After paying homage at the Police Memorial in Chanakya Puri, Shah reached North Block around noon to assume charge where he was welcomed by the two new Ministers of State (Home), Nityanand Rai and Bandi Sanjay Kumar, and Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla.

Shah expressed gratitude to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for reassigning him the responsibilities as Minister of Home Affairs and Minister of Cooperation in the newly-formed NDA government.

Shah briefly spoke about his agenda, and said, “In Modi 3.0, the MHA will continue to accelerate and strengthen security initiatives and introduce new approaches to realise PM Modi’s vision of a secure Bharat”.

He also said efforts will be made to take India’s security to the next level and build Bharat as a bulwark against terrorism and Naxalism.

While Modi retained Shah and Nityanand Rai in the Home Ministry, Karimnagar Member of Parliament Bandi Sanjay Kumar replaced Nisith Pramanik as the MoS since the latter lost the election this time.

Government sources said the Ministry is busy preparing the hundred-day agenda. It is learnt that as part of a major overhaul, the Ministry will rejig the VIP security framework.

To implement the decades-long pending issue of designating certain central armed police force for providing security cover to ministers, leaders and other imminent personalities facing threat, the Union Home Ministry will soon review the protection provided to VIPs.

The government is contemplating withdrawing, scaling down or upgrading security cover for such persons on the basis of intelligence and police inputs on threats to their lives.

The elite National Security Guards (NSG) and Indo Tibetan Border Police are likely to be moved out from the VIP security charter so that they can focus on their core duties. The CRPF and CISF will do the bulk of VIP protection duty.

Major achievements

Shah, credited with rolling out Modi’s plan of abrogation of Article 370 without any violence, in his previous regime will now have to see that elections to local bodies and J&K Assembly happen as per the September deadline fixed by the Supreme Court to grand statehood to the Union Territory.

Shah’s coronation came at a time when terrorists fired on a civilian bus killing about nine persons, and injuring over 30 others in Reasi area of Jammu and Kashmir.

New laws

Another big initiative of the Ministry under Shah was bringing in the three criminal procedure codes — Bharatiya Nyay Sanhita, Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita, and Bharatiya Sakshya Act — to replace British era CRPC, IPC and Evidence Act. MHA will have to supervise smooth execution of the new laws from July 1.

One of the daunting task Shah has up his sleeves is to bring back peace in Manipur. In a rare outburst, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat on Monday pulled up the government on the Manipur violence going on since last one year and suggested that it should be resolved on a priority.

In his address at a Sangh event in Nagpur on Monday, Bhagwat said, “It’s been a year since Manipur has been waiting for peace. The State remained peaceful for the last 10 years, but suddenly, gun culture has increased again. It is important to resolve the conflict as a priority.”

He was of the view that election rhetoric should be avoided and a consensus must be built with the Opposition for larger public good.

The Union Home Minister was also instrumental in the passage of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act for granting citizenship to persecuted minorities from neighbouring countries of Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

The senior BJP leader has also managed to significantly reduce the menace of the Naxalism and has given two years’ time period to his Ministry and agencies to completely wipe out the red corridor.