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CHALLENGES OF INTERNAL SECURITY IN INDIA

Policing in our country has become increasingly complex over the years. Social tensions, religious disputes, growing economic disparities and regional, linguistic and ethnic differences have long been major challenges to effective policing in India. But of late the growing presence of non-state actors, fundamentalist groups & leftwing extremists has further complicated matters. The growing inter-linkages of the destabilizing and criminal forces, across states and across indian  borders, call for far greater vigilance and coordination between the security agencies than ever before. Therefore, over the past decade, we have institutionalized deliberations and structured interactions at various levels.

several countries have similar fora that continuously deliberate upon issues of police relevance and bring out papers on suggested best practices and standard operating procedures for various situations and purposes. In one of many earlier addresses to this very gathering, I had proposed the setting up of a Standing Committee of DGPs to provide policy inputs. I would like such a Standing Committee to begin work in right earnest.

After a relative lull in 2009, the challenges to our internal security seem to have re-emerged in more virulent forms. While we have made good progress in terms of recruitment and setting up of better institutional arrangements for intelligence, investigation, coastal security and counter-terrorism, the problems we face remain daunting.  Training of our officers and men engaged in this theatre should particularly engage yours systematic attention.  the Naxalites are our own people and are ready to talk to them provided they abjure the path of violence. We also stand committed to making special efforts to develop the areas affected by naxal violence, many of which are inhabitated predominantly by our tribal brothers and sisters.

Despite the curtailment of militant activities in Jammu & Kashmir, the public order dimension in the state has become a cause for serious concern. We need to revisit standard operating procedures and crowd control measures to deal with public agitations with non-lethal, yet effective and more focused measures. We also cannot have an approach of one size fits all. For instance, I understand that instead of a single standard sequence for the use of force, other countries have put in place procedures that vary according to the specific needs in different situations. Similarly, the experience begun successfully by the Rapid Action Force for non-lethal crowd control needs to be examined for being followed by other police forces as well. I hope these aspects would engage your attention. I would request the Hon’ble Home Minister to establish a high-power task force to come out with a set of recommendations on these issues in the next 2 / 3 months.

In the North East, the situation in general is better today than it was in the recent past, but some areas of concern still remain. In Manipur, for example the Naga-Metei divide has accentuated. The unfortunate growth of identity based assertiveness in the North East, particularly in Manipur and the North Cachar Hills needs well thought-out and sensitive handling. In other areas of the North-Eastern part of our country, we need to consolidate the gains of the past while at the same time ensuring that new problems do not arise and it can be controlled when they do. The situation in Darjeeling hill area also needs a careful watch. The writ of the State should be firmly established in all these areas. The State police and the central paramilitary forces should take firm action against those who take the law into their own hands.

India also need to be continuously remain vigilant against the rise of communal tensions.

Modern means of communications have enabled adversarial forces to mount powerful and convincing propaganda. Our response to this development needs to be improved. We have to challenge disinformation, often masquerading as objective third party expert opinion, not through suppression or in position of censorship, but by ensuring the availability of better and informed opinion to public at large.

Over the past decade, the Central Government has sought to assist states in addressing their manpower requirements through financial support for India Reserve battalions, Special Police Officers, and the setting up of village defence committees. But, it appears that recruitment to the regular State police forces has not yet picked up as effectively as it should. Although effort has been made in the last two years to address this issue, the backlog remains pretty large. The quality of recruitment also remains an area of concern.

Within the police forces, the current system of promotion is based essentially on seniority. It needs to be suitably recalibrated to catalyse better performance and motivation. For example, a successful stint in an extremism-affected district, should result in greater career benefits to the officers.

Procurement of equipment is another area where speed and quality remain areas of concern. there is a  need to take a re-look at procurement procedures and examine ways of creating adequate testing capacities, coupled with databases of certified equipment, empanelled suppliers and benchmark prices. This if acted upon will save a lot of time and effort in procurement.

Both the Central and State Governments have taken steps to ensure greater inclusiveness in the police forces. The extent of reservation for appointment in Central paramilitary forces for candidates from areas affected by insurgency, militancy and naxalism was increased from 20% to 40% five years back. A number of States have also raised battalions from such areas. I think we need to take this further. This will reduce the feeling of alienation that might exist among the population in certain parts of our country.

Source:  excerpts of the  Prime Minister Addresses Annual Conference of DGPs/IGPs in New Delhi

 

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Excellent

(Muzaffar Rasool, 2011-02-23 16:59)

Keep it up. It is realy torch for the beginners.