New Delhi: The threat of increasing radicalisation in Pakistan was a matter of concern for India, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval said on Thursday.
Delivering the Late Air Chief Marshal P.C. Lal Memorial Lecture organised by the Air Force Association, Doval said: "The external environment is very highly vitiated. Today what we think is far from us in Syria, or Iraq, or Yemen it may not be as far as it looks."
"The threat is real and the threat is imminent. There is change in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Particularly in Pakistan... The radicalisation of Pakistan's society is a matter of added concern," he said.
The NSA to the prime minister said India was "sceptical" about the ability and willingness of Pakistan to handle the situation.
"We are sceptical about the abilities or the competence and the will and desire of the Pakistan government to take on and control the situation though we would like them very much to do so," said Doval, a former chief of the Intelligence Bureau.
He said India wants to deal with Pakistan "fairly" and has been trying to engage its neighbour in a dialogue.
"We want to deal with Pakistan in a way which is fair, correct, transparent and which is not bending to any of the pressure tactics or the blackmailing or the thinking that nuclear threshold probably will leave India with no option but to accept the covert war as a reality to which they don't have any response," he said.
"We want them to change their thinking and, to that extent, India is happy (to help) and India has been trying to engage and I do hope that this engagement in changed circumstances will make them understand that it is in the interests of both the countries," he added.
Doval said the situation as it was developing in the Indian Ocean region was another matter of concern, adding that India's role as the largest littoral power was important.
He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent visit to the Indian Ocean nations has "reinstated" the country's position.
Doval stressed that in the current situation, modernisation of India's forces was important.
He also said the physical movement of terrorists was not the only concern, but the "subversion of minds" through radicalisation was a "bigger threat".
He also mentioned terror groups reaching out to the youth through the internet.
While he mentioned the relation between Pakistan and China, Doval said there was no threat of a war.
"I don't say there is an imminent threat from China of Pakistan. When I say we should be prepared, I am not talking about any immediate war. Preparedness dose not mean war, it is a deterrent," he said.
About the northeastern region, he said the situation now was better than ever before.
"Dialogue with insurgents is like negotiations with hijackers. Utilise the time for defining strategy and building society," he added.