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  • September 26 Attacks in J&K: Assessing the Response

    The infiltration by a large group of terrorists in the Karen Sector, is a harsh reminder for the police, army and security planners in the country that the ongoing proxy war from Pakistan will continue to challenge the Indian state.

    October 04, 2013

    Showdown between RIs and Pakistan Army: Implications for India

    The Pakistan army is caught in a cleft stick on the issue of dealing with the Radical Islamists. A section of the military establishment sympathizes and empathizes with the sectarian agenda of the RIs due to its own religious predilections.

    October 04, 2013

    India's Internal Security Situation: Present Realities and Future Pathways

    India's Internal Security Situation: Present Realities and Future Pathways

    The Monograph deals with the internal security situation in India. It focuses on the Naxal conflict, the Northeastern ethnic armed insurgencies, and terrorism for a detailed study.


    Arrest of Yasin Bhatkal: An Analysis

    The arrest of Bhatkal, head of the Indian Mujahideen, highlights the measures taken by security agencies including improved coordination in different states to apprehend a number of terrorists in the last few years.

    September 02, 2013

    Mohit Gupta: How is organised crime in India reinforcing terrorism? What are the linkages especially with regard to terror funding?

    Vivek Chadha replies: Crime and terrorism can potentially have a very close linkage. While there may or may not always be a linkage between the two, however, both international case studies and those in India do point towards it.

    If we look at some of the regions in the country affected by terrorism, this linkage becomes apparent. In the Northeast, extortion is the fundamental basis for funding all forms of terrorism. In addition to this, kidnapping has been used extensively for spreading terror and raising funds. Human trafficking, drug trafficking and gun running are some of the other criminal activities that have been common in these areas.

    In J&K, counterfeit currency has been a major source of funding terrorism.

    In the Maoist terror movements, extortion is yet again a common phenomenon. They have also indulged in robberies of banks to fund their movement. There have also been reports of cuts being enforced on drug yielding crops in the region.

    The Indian Mujahideen has also resorted to crime to raise funds. This includes robberies, kidnappings, etc.

    There are also a number of insurgent groups which over a period of time have morphed into crime syndicates. What began as an ideological movement is now merely a means of generating profit. This is especially the case with insurgent groups in Northeast India.

    Left-Wing Extremism and Counterinsurgency in India: The ‘Andhra Model’

    India has a long history of left-wing extremism. The largest and most powerful left-wing extremist group today is the Communist Party of India (CPI) (Maoist), which is active in many states across the country. Its ultimate goal is to capture power through a combination of armed insurgency and mass mobilisation. In recent times, the southern state of Andhra Pradesh has achieved notable success in counterinsurgency operations against the Maoists. This article outlines the ‘Andhra model’, which involves a mix of security, development and political approaches.

    July 2013

    Pakistan in Paralysis: Jailbreaks and a State in disarray

    The DI Khan jail-break was waiting to happen under the current PTI-led dispensation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Ever since this government has come to power, there is complete confusion on the new policy on terrorism.

    August 02, 2013

    S. Thiagarajan asked: How the United States will continue its war against terrorism after 2014? Is it through air power (via drones, fixed wing fighter jets)?

    Vishal Chandra replies: There can be no clear cut reply to this query at the moment, as the nature and level of the US engagement in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region post-2014 remain somewhat vague. The bilateral security or the status-of-force agreement, which is supposed to provide a legal framework and lay down terms and conditions for the American presence beyond 2014, is still being negotiated. Serious differences have emerged between Kabul and Washington over the issue of operational role, authority and legal immunity of the American troops to be stationed in Afghanistan after 2014. A long-term security agreement with the US is bound to have implications for politics both within Afghanistan and at the wider regional level. It remains to be seen whether Washington would enter into a security agreement with the current government or wait for the elections in April next year and the new leadership to take over.

    However, it is clear that the US and certain NATO member-states would be maintaining some military presence in different parts of the country in support of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), which will remain critically dependent on Western assistance for several years to come. The NATO too is mulling over the broad contours of its post-ISAF mission. Kabul is likely to enter into a separate agreement with NATO after the security agreement with the US comes through.

    How important the Afghan mission will be for the US after 2014-15, is the key issue here. At the wider Asian level, Washington is engaged in re-aligning its political and military strategies to deal with long-term challenges posed by developments taking place in both West and East Asia. Though it is too early to be commenting on its likely implications for the US’ post-2014 mission in Afghanistan, it is clear that the US foreign policy and response strategies are in for a major transformation.

    There is definitely a big question mark on the effectiveness of the US role and presence in managing the Afghan situation after 2014 and particularly in dealing with Pakistan’s continued support to forces inimical to political stability and American presence in Afghanistan. The ongoing effort for political reconciliation with the Pakistan-based Afghan Taliban leadership too is unlikely to yield any concrete and sustainable results in the near future. Though the democratically-elected new civilian government in Islamabad has made some positive statements, one would still have to wait and see to what extent the civilian leadership would be able to prevail upon the powerful military establishment of the country.

    In the current scenario, the US is expected to continue with drone strikes against militant groups inside Pakistan’s tribal areas, and special operations along with Afghan forces against militant strongholds inside Afghanistan. Apart from training and equipping the ANSF, the US and its NATO allies will have to retain strong counter-terrorism capabilities to be able to sustain its presence in the country. There is already a debate going on within the US establishment in this regard.

    Much would also depend on the outcome of the Afghan presidential and parliamentary elections, particularly the conduct of elections, and the credibility of the next leadership in Kabul. Ultimately, it is the strength of the Afghan institutions, and, more importantly, the will of the Afghan people to protect and further build on the positive achievements of the last one decade that would determine the destiny of post-2014 Afghanistan.

    Chaitanya Mungi asked: What are the steps taken by the government to tackle Naxalism or to end it?

    Reply: Refer to the text of lecture by former Home Secretary, Mr. G.K. Pillai, on “Left-Wing Extremism in India” at IDSA on March 5, 2010

    Also, refer to the following IDSA publications:

    Measures to Deal with Left-Wing Extremism/Naxalism
    By P. V. Ramana, IDSA Occasional Paper No. 20, 2011

    HC Dutta asked: What does India stand to gain by pushing through a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism at the UN?

    Satish Nambiar replies: As a country affected by terrorism, long before the more powerful countries of the developed world began to take cognisance of the threat it poses to international peace and security, India has always condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations; stressed that tackling such behaviour required a holistic approach and collective action; and recommended that the scope of legal instruments must be expanded to bring the perpetrators of terrorism to justice. India, therefore, has a vital stake in the formulation of counter-terrorist measures at the international level, including a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT). It is in this context that India had proposed a draft of a CCIT as far back as 1996.

    The conclusion and ratification of such a convention by member states would bind them to action on the contents of the operative paragraphs of the Security Council Resolution 1373 of 2001 that are available at http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2001/sc7158.doc.htm. They are self explanatory in so far as pursuing India’s interests are concerned.