New Delhi: In a worrisome trend, researchers have found that candidates with less or poor general aptitude are getting attracted to jobs in the Intelligence Bureau and the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) among other agencies and suggested changes in selection procedures.
According to a report prepared by Delhi-based think tank Observer Research Foundation (ORF) and the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) on `Reforming India`s Intelligence Structure`, interviewers are encountering candidates who have no general knowledge and awareness on current affairs.
Citing examples, a researcher requesting anonymity said a candidate identified Hyderabad as the capital of Karnataka instead of Bangalore while facing such an interview. Another candidate could hardly speak a sentence when asked to brief on the situation in Kashmir and cross-border infiltration.
This, according to the report, is a "tail-end" syndrome which is attracting aspirants with less marks in the civil services exams to the country`s intelligence agencies.
The report suggested a need for comprehensive reforms, paradigm shift of working, improving recruitment, deputation, promotions, training for new recruits and better quality supervision of operations in intelligence agencies to get better result.
"With the growing threat to national security, there comes a greater need for the strongest and most efficient structure of intelligence that can possibly be aspired to," the report said.
It also pin-pointed several deficiencies like lack of specialised staff for gathering intelligence, analysis and modern snooping equipment among others.
A former bureaucrat, who was part of a deliberation held here recently on the report`s findings, said the interview board often gets a list of candidates who are basically rejected for the other services or get low marks in the civil services examination.
Researchers have expressed concern over vacant posts in the intelligence units like Directorate of Revenue Intelligence and the National Technical Research Organisation.
The report proposed the concept of National Intelligence Coordinator (NIC) to coordinate with central security agencies and directly discuss the matter with National Security Adviser (NSA), Home, Defence and External Affairs Ministers under overall supervision and control of the Prime Minister.
It also envisaged the role of NSA as main diplomatic adviser under the proposed concept of NIC and National Grid for quick and secure communications.