India remains "vulnerable", new terror groups raising heads: PC

Underlining that India remains "vulnerable" to terrorism, Home Minister P Chidambaram on Tuesday said new groups are suspected to be behind some terror attacks that took place in recent years.

Last Updated: Feb 01, 2011, 14:02 PM IST

New Delhi: Underlining that India remains
"vulnerable" to terrorism, Home Minister P Chidambaram on Tuesday
said new groups are suspected to be behind some terror attacks
that took place in recent years.

"I must caution you that there is no let up in the
attempts to infiltrate into India from across the India-
Pakistan border. Besides, there are a number of modules
operating within the country and new groups have raised their
heads that are suspected to be behind some terrorist attacks
that took place in recent years," he said in his address at
the `Meeting of Chief Minister on Internal Security` here.
The Minister said, "We cannot shy away from naming
these groups or exposing their designs. Whatever their
religious affiliations, I have no hesitation in condemning
every group that resorts to terror as a means of advancing
dubious religious causes or fundamentalist goals.

"Our policy in this regard is clear -- every terrorist
and every terrorist group will be pursued and brought before
the law and punished," he said.

Chidambaram, however, did not name any of the groups
that were suspected to be behind some of the terrorists
attacks in the last few years.

He said, "The evidence that the NIA and CBI are
discovering every day should serve as a wake-up call to the
new sources of terror that threaten our security."

Referring to Naxalism, the Home Minister said,
"Looking back at 2010, my assessment is that there is a kind
of a stalemate. The state governments concerned cannot claim
any major advance, nor should we conclude that the CPI
(Maoist) has gained the upper hand. There have been casualties
on both sides."
Security forces had received some serious setbacks
last year including the loss of 75 CRPF personnel in one
single ambush undertaken by the Naxals in Dantewada district
of Chhattisgarh.

The Minister said the CPI (Maoist) remains a powerful
and determined adversary and has added at least four companies
to the People`s Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA), the armed
wing of the Naxals.

Taking an apparent dig at civil society activists,
Chidambaram said in 2010, left-wing extremists killed 718
civilians of which 323 were killed after branding them as
`police informers`.

"Unlike our security forces, the Naxalite cadres are
not constrained by the rule of law or rules of conflict. In
areas they dominate they act as judge, jury and executioner.

"I regret that no representative of civil society has
called for an inquiry into the brutal and unlawful killing of
civilians and other acts of depredation committed by the CPI
(Maoist)," he said.

Chidambaram said, "The Government`s offer of talks
remains valid on the condition that the CPI (Maoist) abjured
violence."

Talking about other issues, the Minister said Jammu
and Kashmir presents a "unique challenge". He said the
situation was improving until the beginning of June 2010.

"The three-month period of agitation was an
unfortunate and deeply regrettable chapter. However, after the
visit of the all-party parliamentary delegation and the
appointment of interlocutors, there has been a significant
improvement."

He said the interlocutors have been able to change the
discourse. "We have tasked them to outline the contours of a
political solution based on the suggestions received by them.
My earnest appeal is that nothing should be said or done that
will destroy the fragile peace or derail the process of
finding a political solution."

On the issue of insurgency in northeast, the Minister
said it gave him "great satisfaction" to report that there had
been a dramatic change in the situation there.

He said 2010 witnessed the lowest level of violence in
many years. "Barring Assam and Manipur, the other states have
shown remarkable improvement."

The Minister also said he is happy to report that the
internal security situation in the country has vastly improved
during the last two years.

In 2010, there was one major incident in Pune on
February 13. There was another incident in Varanasi on
December 7 last year that "caused, thankfully little damage,"
he said.

Chidambaram said in both cases, specific intelligence
was given to the two state governments. He said it would be
unrealistic to expect that intelligence could be any more
specific than what was gathered and shared in the two cases.

"I am sure you will agree with me that the two
incidents of terror in a period of 26 months mark a
significant improvement in the situation," he said.

PTI