MALE: India is conscious of threats emanating from the ISIS and is taking necessary precautions, BJP general secretary Ram Madhav said here on Wednesday. "ISIS terror group, which is hitherto a problem in West Asia, has slowly started expanding its tentacles into the Indian Ocean region, certain countries have already become a target of terror activities," he said while speaking to ANI after the conclusion of the Indian Ocean Conference (IOC).
"So far as India is concerned, we are conscious of our threats and challenges emanating from west Asia. We are taking necessary precautions," added Madhav, who is also director of India Foundation. "Indian government is taking full care that India doesn`t provide space for any such an organisation," he said.
Securing the Indian Ocean was one of the main themes of discussion at the two-day conference. Madhav said one of the threats that region faces is terrorism. "One of the threats that the Indian Ocean region faces is terrorism and in that, we have multiple state-sponsored and non-stake actors among which is ISIS also. Some countries in the region already have the experience of ISIS terror. So naturally regional powers express concerns over growing ISIS shadow over these countries," said Madhav.
Leaders of Sri Lanka and the Maldives also underlined during the conference the need to forge strategy in tackling ISIS. In fact, former Maldives President Nasheed said ISIS is building a deep state in the Maldives. The issue of freedom of Navigation was also discussed during the conference.
Speaking on the issue, Madhav said: "Freedom of navigation is to be zealously guarded. It is an objective that every country wants to be guarded because this region has huge stakes for the countries in the form of trade. Almost half of the container trade takes place through this region. In that context freedom of navigation acquires a huge significance. It is not specific to one country or any one part of the region. We have challenges like piracy. When we talk about freedom of navigation right from the South China Sea to Persian Gulf, the Indian Ocean needs to be looked into."
Madhav, who was talking to ANI at the conclusion of the conference, also emphasised the importance of the Indo-Pacific region. "Indo-Pacific region with the centrality of ASEAN powers is going to be the future power centre of the world. Indo-Pacific ocean is the busiest sea route today. It is the most happening part of the world today and centrality of the 10-country block of ASEAN is also well acknowledged. This fact is to be appreciated by all the powers. Many appreciate the fact that Indo-Pacific ocean is very important for the future of all the countries in the region," added Madhav.