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Imminent Internal Security Threats

  • Category
    Internal Security
  • Published
    18th Apr, 2019

Recently,Dantewada MLA BheemaMandavi along with five people were killed after Naxals targeted the convoy at Shyamgiri.  The IED blast has occurred in Shyamgiri under Kuakonda Police Station.

Issue

Context

Recently,Dantewada MLA BheemaMandavi along with five people were killed after Naxals targeted the convoy at Shyamgiri.  The IED blast has occurred in Shyamgiri under Kuakonda Police Station.

About:

Sometimes in the past, the Indian Prime Minister had stated Naxalism as the biggest internal security threat to India.Activities surrounding naxalism only strengthens this belief that this phenomena is more alive that statistically frozen - as claimed by government data.

Social and economic factors are important, but even more important are religion and identity when a rational evaluation is taken over internal security challenges faced by a country.

 Background:

The rise of contentious politics based on sectarian, regional, ethnic, linguistic or other divisive criteria, is primarily responsible for the many communal and secessionist movements flourishing in India.

The presence of hostile neighbors enables the internal conflicts to get external support, which includes money, arms and sanctuaries.

The vested interests exploit these conditions to pursue their own agenda.

While for most of the internal security contexts, above pointers hold sway, but for Naxal movement, theoretically the neglect of grass root development demand and state's failure prevention of their exploitation is the prime reason.

Analysis

India’s Internal Security Challenges:

  • In a well-established political system and a developed economy, conflicts between the various group identities are kept under check as in due course they get assimilated into the national identity.
  • The dependence on the government by a large section of our people for their very survival sharpens these conflicts among them.
  • The democratic institutions and the state structures are still not strong enough to fully harmonize these conflicts in a peaceful manner.
  • Violence erupts when conflicting interests cannot be consensually reconciled.
  • The hostile external forces, taking advantage of this situation through subversive propaganda, further accentuate these conflicts.
  • They give material and ideological support to aggravate this sense of grievance to such an extent that a small minority are willing to become tools in their hands to subvert the stability and security of the country.

A deeper insight to the problem

  • Ever since independence, India has been facing all types of violent conflicts based on religion, caste, language, ethnicity and regional loyalties.
  • Preoccupied with the problem of survival, the governments in some of the most affected states are not looking at the problem from a long-term perspective.
  • If the above myopic tendencies are corrected then the issues surrounding a major chunk of internal security can be tackled.
  • But, instead of effectively dealing with them in the initial stages when the problem is manageable, they have allowed these anti-national forces to take roots and spread their tentacles far and wide.
  • When a state government is unable to effectively deal with them, instead of strengthening the state police machinery, it rushes to the Centre to hand over its responsibility at the first sign of any serious trouble.
  • Finding themselves at the mercy of these subversive forces, the people tend to change sides and start supporting them instead of supporting the security forces.
  • Polarization on caste and religious lines can further reduce the credibility of the police in the minds of the people.

The role of police-politician-criminal nexus

  • Their activities create an environment of lawlessness, where influential and rich people violate the law with impunity.
  • The police is not the only component of the criminal justice system that has suffered because of this nexus.
  • Not all crimes are being registered and those registered are not being properly investigated; and even out of those charge-sheeted, very few are ending in conviction.

Left Extremism

  • The root cause for the rise in Left extremism is the inability of the states to address the many genuine grievances of the people.
  • The gap between the unrealistic expectations, fuelled by populist rhetoric, and their actual fulfillment has increased and not decreased over the years.
  • An educational system which produces unemployable young boys and girls has not helped. Pressure on land has made the task of survival on agriculture more difficult.
  • But it is not ideology and revolutionary zeal that is driving them. For many, joining these groups is the only way to survive.
  • What they cannot get through legitimate means they obtain through arms and explosives. Their tactics are no different from the insurgents and terrorists.
  • Corrupt politicians, policemen and civil servants have made their own adjustments with these groups. A live-and-let live attitude is mutually beneficial to all of them.

What can be the components of multi-pronged reformatory steps?

  • Effective steps to reduce ethnic and social inequalities, disparities in educational and employment opportunities.
  • Creating an effective machinery for the redressal of public grievance, are absolutely essential to improve the environment in which extremist violence flourishes.
  • Steps to reduce economic deprivation and improve the delivery of essential services can erode the base of public support on which the extremist movements survive.
  • A thriving economy, which gives hope and opportunity to the people, is more likely to defeat all types of extremist movements than any other strategy.
  • The need for a well co-ordinate security apparatus can hardly be overemphasized.
  • This Trusteeship was mandated to place limit on Jewish immigration and create a division of Palestine into separate Jewish and Arab provinces but not states.
  • A composite force on the lines of the National Security Guards (NSG) should be organized in all the states, even in those states where the internal security situation is not so serious.
  • But in the states where the situation has gone beyond their control, the Centre, as laid down in the Constitution, is duty-bound to intervene, notwithstanding the fact that law and order is under the State List.
  • The Union government is charged with the responsibility of protecting the states from internal disturbances under Article 353 of the Constitution, even though law and order comes under List-II, the State List.

Closing comments

  • The many internal security challenges can be met effectively only with full cooperation between the central and the state governments.
  • All serious internal security problems: communal and sectarian violence, organized crime, drug-trafficking, labour and students’ unrest, political violence and even economic crimes, if not checked effectively can develop an external dimension.
  • The internal security problems should not be treated as merely law and order problems.
  • They have to be dealt with comprehensively in all their dimensions and at all levels — political, economic and social.
  • The security requirements have to be met, but that does not mean giving the security agencies a free hand.
  • Striking the right balance is the key to success in meeting these challenges effectively.
  • In the absence of this coordinated measure, the hostile foreign forces can and will take advantage of the internal situation to destabilize the country in pursuit of their own agenda.

Learning Aid

Practice Question:

In public perception a government that is unable to discharge all its responsibilities is more likely to respond when the demand is loud, organized and backed by acts of violence. Within this context, evaluate background for the rise in internal security challenges and how far has the state acted in right consonance in dealing with it.

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