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Strengthen Human Intelligence Network

Saturday - May 6, 2017 9:25 am , Category : WTN SPECIAL

Following the ghastly killing of 26 CRPF personnel in the violence-prone Sukma district of Chhattisgarh by Maoist guerillas, Union home minister Rajnath Singh chaired meeting of top brass including National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Union home secretary Rajiv Mehrishi and others who stressed on focused re-calibration of anti-Naxal strategy. 
 
It was decided to strengthen the human Intelligence network in Maoist-hit areas to minimise casualties of security forces engaged in anti-Naxal operations. The meeting stressed revamping the Intelligence gathering mechanism, meticulously analysing the ongoing operations, identifying problem areas and resolving them for better results. 
 
The extra-stress on human Intelligence stemmed from reports that the Naxalite guerrillas attacked the CRPF team after taking shelter in the houses of local tribals without the security forces getting a whiff of it. Had the Intelligence gathering mechanism been strong enough, the incident could have been averted. 
 
Hence, it was felt that there should be more engagement with the local population in the coming days. The minister directed the officials that there should be no let up in the anti-Naxal operations in the aftermath of the recent reverses. Instead, the operations be intensified further, he said. Later, Singh also asked the top officials to stay put in Chhattisgarh and shape and oversee operations against the banned ultras. 
 
The CRPF, which was without a top cop to head it for months now also gets a new DG in Rajiv Bhatnagar. The government is also planning to induct foliage penetration radar to track and nab the guerillas effectively in quick time. Such radar can pick movements of the ultras even in dense forests and click pictures, which could give crucial clues to the forces. It is surprising that despite making big strides in our military acumen, we still are not able to check the bloodshed caused by the Naxalites year after year. 
 
Though the government is saying the standard operating procedure was not followed by the CRPF men during the ambush, which led to so many casualties, it is surprising as to how could such fatal lapses in combat operations be accepted in this age of high precision surgical  warfare techniques being practised and adopted by all major forces of the world? 
 
It is a serious lapse if the reason is so and something must be done to train our men in the best and latest combat practices. It is a pity that despite having all the world class resources at hand, we still suffer in the hands of a group of disgruntled youths who harbor grudge against their own country and people for imagined ‘injustice’. 
 
The governments have been doing all to encourage such youth to join the mainstream and make a better life for themselves and their community by launching several development schemes over the years but the ‘revolution’ hogwash has botched their possibilities for any better future. The only option left with the government is to tear into their domain and flush out the insurgents without any mercy or leniency. 
 
We have tried as best as we could to teach these guys the benefits of a civilised living and ways to achieve it but for them progression and productivity can come only by gun totting and killing fellow human beings. Anyway, it is always better to set our own home in order before fighting the world. 
 
We need to pay more attention to our approach to the issue rather than blaming others for their foolhardiness. It is a shame that despite suffering for decades at the hands of the insurgents, we still have to manage with lacunae in the Intelligence system. Intelligence lapses have been found even on the borders, which have often made it easy for Pak terror groups to sneak into India and target army camps. 
 
We certainly need urgent measures to have a state-of-the-art Intelligence gathering and dissemination mechanism in place. We are a leading country in communication network, satellite and software penetration which is guiding every aspect of our life today, yet we are not properly able to track the precise movements of insurgents in a small area of Chhattisgarh—which is a traditional and known hiding place of the Naxals. It is indeed intriguing how a locally bred and trained group takes on successfully a well trained and equipped specialised combat force. If our forces are not measuring up to their tactics we certainly need an urgent redrawing of our strategies.
 
 It is clear that either there are training shortcomings or communication or Intelligence failure, or both, which push our soldiers on the back foot. To lead the CRPF men, the top brass should be peopled by experts and specialists who have experience or study of the intricacies of guerilla warfare and ways to tackle them successfully. 
 
Cops from the police services who usually sit at the helm of affairs may not be specifically equipped to lead such jungle operations. If needed, we can also take cues from the US or other advanced militaries to gain expertise in this specific type of warfare and discuss with them the possible reasons for our repeated setbacks.
 
  Also it must be tracked through which channel the Maoists get their ammunition and funding which help them sustain. If those channels and sources of replenishment are effectively blocked, the structure will naturally weaken. It was said that in the latest attack, the local populace had sheltered the insurgents at their homes which placated suspicion and speculation, paving the way for an easy attack they unleashed upon our men in uniform. If needed, we should raise a special short-term or mid-term force with a stipulated deadline to end the menace for good.
 
 We have had successes now and then in checking the spread of Naxalism through better involvement of the tribal public and weaning away thousands of youth into the mainstream through jobs and skill enhancements etc. but such positive outcomes have been sporadic and spread over long periods of time. The Naxal base has already weakened through sustained military interventions, but we still have stray groups which keep the broth boiling. 
 
 
Those who are willing to shun violence should always be welcomed to be a part of civil society but those who refuse to do so and vow to keep on fighting a lost war for a lost cause must be dealt with strongly. That’s the only way peace and prosperity can be ushered in. We cannot let a handful of destructive minds hold a country to ransom and push it towards darkness!- Window To News
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