Terror challenge more grave, says Chidambaram

Terror challenge more grave, says Chidambaram


Union Home Minister P Chidambaram addressing the All India Conference of Directors General/Inspectors General of Police-2009, in New Delhi on Monday. PTI

"Terrorist groups including LeT and JeM persist in their endeavour to launch terror attacks. They continue to innovate new ways and means of deniability. They find support among disgruntled elements within India," Chidambaram said.

Inaugurating a three-day long conference of Directors General and Inspectors General of police organised by Intelligence Bureau, Chidambaram cross border terrorism "is a matter of deep concern" and policing in India was always a challenge and after "26/11, the challenge has become more grave."

"Let me state our position clearly. On terrorism, our stance is zero tolerance. We shall raise our level of preparedness to fight any terror threat attack and, in the case of threat or attack, our response will be swift and decisive," the Home Minister said.
He said the security agencies have neutralised 13 terror modules in the first six months of this year.

Describing 26/11 attacks as a "game-changer", he said "We meet under circumstances that pose formidable challenges to the security of the nation. The attacks in Mumbai on November 26, last year were a game changer. We can no longer afford to business as usual," he said.

The Home Minister said the country's security faces many threats from sources like -- terrorism, Left Wing Extremism and insurgency -- in certain states.

On Left-Wing extremism, Chidambaram said it was purporting to be a radical form of communism. "Today, various groups adhering to this outdated ideology have their pockets of influence in 20 states," he said, adding the banned CPI (Maoist) remaining the most potent of the naxal groups with a presence in 17 states and a 90 per cent share in naxal violence.

In a bid to expand its network and influence, the Maoist have been seeking alliances with secessionist and terrorist elements in the country, the Home Minister said.
"It has been keenly seeking ideological resonance and tactical understanding withe the Northeast insurgents and has begun to lend support to their secessionist ideology and demands," he said.

The Home Minister said "endemic insurgencies" in the North-eastern states also posed a security challenge.

"The trend of gradual deterioration in security situation during last several years seems to have been checked this year with relative decline in overall violence. Sharp shrinkages in social resonance has rendered the ULFA a much weaker organisation," he said.
Chidambaram expressed concern over the situation in Manipur but said insurgencies have been contained in Meghalaya and Tripura.

Safe sanctuaries across the border, easy access to arms and extensive international border have helped the insurgent movements in the area to sustain so long, he said.
About the developments in Jammu and Kashmir, Chidambaram said the state has seen steady improvement in the security situation but cautioned the security forces and state police not to lower their guard.

He said an effective strategy to neutralise terrorists, insurgents and extremists needs an institutionalised mechanism for "intelligence sharing and operational coordination" among police force of the country.

"The police forces work within existing legal framework and normally remain operationally confined to their respective states. Terrorists, extremists and insurgents do not face such constraints," he said.

The Home Minister said Multi Agency Centre (MAC), a coordinating agency on counter-terrorism, has been operationalised under the Intelligence Bureau along with 29 Subsidiary MACs which have been set in different states.

He urged the naxals to abjure violence as there was no place for an armed liberation struggle in a republican democracy.

Chidambaram said a number of measures which were "overdue" have been initiated in past nine months to strengthen the state and central police forces.
"The measures that we have taken are long overdue and, in a sense, exposed the neglect and tardiness of the past. The Centre and the States must share the blame for the remissness of the past," he said.

"Before the second conference, we had requested State Governments to respond to a questionnaire on the progress made in implementing the decisions of the first conference. I regret to report that only 12 States sent us their responses," he said.
Earlier in his speech, Intelligence Bureau Director Rajeev Mathur said that there was no room for complacency as sponsored terrorism from across the border continued.
He also paid tributes to 685 police and security personnel who laid down their lives last year.

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