In­ter­nal se­cu­rity has to be given top pri­or­ity


Gen­eral elec­tions are round the cor­ner, though dates are yet to be an­nounced. When po­lit­i­cal bat­tles are be­ing fought tooth and nail and se­cu­rity forces are de­ployed in the run-up to the elec­tions, it is around this time el­e­ments in­im­i­cal to state in­ter­ests be­come lot more ac­tive. Al­ready, we have had a ma­jor in­ci­dent at a Patna rally of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) where the prime min­is­te­rial can­di­date was ad­dress­ing. Six peo­ple were killed and 83 were in­jured in seven bomb blasts in Patna. Two days af­ter se­rial blasts tar­geted Naren­dra Modi’s Patna rally, the Uttar Pradesh po­lice said they had re­ceived in­tel­li­gence in­puts about ter­ror­ists plot­ting to at­tack the BJP’s prime min­is­te­rial can­di­date’s Oc­to­ber 19 rally in Kan­pur. They could have used rocket launch­ers and im­pro­vised ex­plo­sive de­vices (IEDs).

In­deed, fright­en­ing sce­nario. Re­cently, the Union Home Min­is­ter Sushilku­mar Shinde, who in­au­gu­rated a con­fer­ence of Di­rec­tors Gen­eral of Po­lice (DGPs) in New Delhi said that In­dia is fac­ing mul­ti­far­i­ous chal­lenges on the in­ter­nal se­cu­rity front in the form of mil­i­tancy in J&K, in­sur­gency in some parts of the North­east, the threat of left-wing ex­trem­ism (LWE) and ter­ror­ism in the hin­ter­land.

The Home Min­is­ter has clearly stated that the In­dian Mu­jahid­den, which draws its mo­ti­va­tion and sus­te­nance from in­im­i­cal forces op­er­at­ing from across the western bor­der, has been re­spon­si­ble for three out of four ma­jor ter­ror­ist at­tacks in our hin­ter­land this year. Th­ese in­clude Hy­der­abad twin blasts and the se­ries of blasts at

Bod­hgaya and Patna. Keep­ing all this mind, we need to in­vest lot more on strength­en­ing in­ter­nal se­cu­rity and in­vest­ment is not just fi­nan­cially, but also through var­i­ous de­vel­op­men­tal ac­tiv­i­ties and through con­tin­u­ous di­a­logue with mod­er­ate el­e­ments.

In this is­sue, Lt Gen­eral (Retd) P.C. Ka­toch has un­der­scored the im­por­tance of equip­ping the Spe­cial Forces, con­sid­er­ing that they are be­ing de­ployed in sev­eral anti-ter­ror ac­tiv­i­ties. He has pointed out how there is no proper plan­ning in the cre­ation of Spe­cial Forces and also how equip­ment is ac­quired and dis­trib­uted, leav­ing the units ill-equipped.

Mov­ing from in­ter­nal se­cu­rity to Navy, we have good news that In­dia’s sec­ond air­craft car­rier INS Vikra­ma­ditya is on its way to In­dia from Rus­sia to be in­ducted in Jan­uary and that there would be ex­er­cises in 2014 and with other coun­tries in 2015. No doubt, INS Vikra­ma­ditya will find pride of place in the Western Fleet as the coun­try’s flag­ship.

With re­gards to ex­er­cises, the third round of In­dia-China joint army ex­er­cises held re­cently in China was fo­cused on counter-ter­ror­ism drills that in­cluded tac­ti­cal hand sig­nals, ar­rest and es­cort, hostage res­cue, joint at­tacks and com­plete anti-ter­ror drills. Lt Gen­eral (Retd) Ka­toch writes that the un­der­lin­ing truth is that a joint Sino-In­dian ef­fort to counter Is­lamic rad­i­cal­ism is vi­tal for sta­bil­ity in the re­gion. China should un­der­stand this bet­ter with in­creased vi­o­lence in Xinjiang and with the re­cent ter­ror­ist strike at Tianan­men Square.

Thus, in­ter­nal se­cu­rity has be­come a very crit­i­cal fac­tor in the eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment of a na­tion and there is no doubt what­so­ever that the gov­ern­ment of the day has to give pri­macy to this. We look for­ward to your feed­back as to im­prove our cov­er­age. Happy read­ing !

Jayant Baran­wal Publisher & Ed­i­tor-in-Chief

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