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Question – What do you understand by internal security? Referring to the loopholes of internal security management, suggest remedies to solve this problem. – 22 May 2021
In the words of the great diplomat Chanakya, the first objective of every state is to protect its subjects from any kind of attack. “The happiness of the people is the happiness of the king, and the interest of the subjects is only the interest of the king.” Two carriers have a major role in adversely affecting the happiness and interest of the subjects, with the first carrier being a neighbor or another country, while the second carrier may be the presence of criminals within the state.
Chanakya has written in Arthashastra that, a state can face the following four different types of threats- A.) Internal, B.) External, C.) Externally – aided internal, D.) Internally – aided External. The internal security scenario in India is a mixture of almost all forms of the above mentioned threats. Despite the ongoing lockdown, India faces various challenges at the level of external and internal security. A vivid example of this is the attack by the neighboring country of Pakistan to send terrorists from across the border to India, and the ‘Nihang Sikhs’ during the lockout in Punjab.
Meaning of Internal Security:
- The common meaning of internal security is the security of a country within its borders. Internal security is a very old terminology, but its dimensions have changed over time. While there were protests, rallies, communal riots, religious frenzy at the center of internal security before independence, the developing systems of science and technology after independence have made internal security more sensitive and complex.
- Internal security has now become a greater challenge for us in the form of proxy war rather than conventional war.
Critical Components of Internal Security
- Protection of sovereignty and integrity of the nation
- Maintaining internal peace and security in the country
- Maintenance of law and order
- Maintaining peaceful coexistence and communal harmony
Challenges faced by internal security
India’s historical experience with the geopolitical situation of India, its neighboring factors, wide and risky terrestrial, air and sea borders make it susceptible to security. In this context, the following challenges in front of internal security are-
- Naxalism– Naxalism is the informal name of the movement of communist revolutionaries that arose as a result of the Indian communist movement. The word Naxal originated from the small village of Naxalbari in West Bengal. In 1967, Charu Mazumdar and Kanu Sanyal led the movement. Naxalism soon engulfed many states of the country; as a result, Naxalism killed thousands of people. Today, Naxalism is present as the biggest challenge to the internal security of the country.
- Corruption- Corruption is considered the mother of all problems, because it adversely affects the control, regulation and policy-making capacity of the state. In fact, an act which is done with the intention of availing undesirable benefits, that is, deviations from ethics, morality, tradition and law, and which lacks integration and misuse of power in the decision making process, is classified as corruption.
- Religious bigotry and ethnic strife – There have been many communal riots in India since independence. This has fragmented the pluralistic culture of India. Many groups and organizations on the narrow basis of religion, language or region etc. are also making parallel efforts to increase social inequality among the people. These extremist organizations claim the superiority of their religion, language or region, and develop a particular type of mindset.
- Drug trade – ‘Golden Triangle’ in neighboring countries of India (Myanmar, Thailand and Laos) and the presence of ‘Golden Crescent’ (Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan) regions, the increasing trade of narcotics have emerged as a major challenge to India’s internal security.
- Organized crime – Organized groups of more than one person, who are united to commit serious crimes, for the economic or other benefits, directly or indirectly, falls under the category of organized crime. Traditional organized crimes include illegal liquor business, kidnapping, extortion, robbery, robbery and blackmailing etc. Non-traditional or modern organized crimes include hawala trading, cyber crime, human trafficking, narcotics trade etc.
- Money Laundering – Money laundering is the legalization of black money. It is a process by which the income earned from an illegal source is legitimized and shown. The money involved is used in narcotics trade, terrorist funding and Hawala etc. activities. Despite the difficulty in measurement, the amount of black money to be legalized every year is in the billions and it has become an important policy concern for governments.
- Terrorism – Terrorism is a group of actions in which violence is used to generate any kind of fear and damage. Any type of terrorism is it regional or national or international, creates a situation of insecurity, fear and crisis in the country. The extent of terrorism is not a single state, country or region, but today it is emerging as an international problem.
Drawbacks of internal security administration
- It is important that the US and the UK revise their internal security doctrine every year according to the circumstances and a public discussion is held on those policies, but India has learned nothing from both its important partners on this front, while we know that this problem is even more complicated in India.
- Long-term policies have to be made to solve any problem, and within the long-term policies, keeping in mind the current circumstances, we make some policies for the short term. It is unfortunate that neither we have a long-term policy on Jammu and Kashmir and Northeast India, nor any strategic vision to deal with the Maoist insurgency.
- In most states, the police are still complying with the compliance of the archaic system. It is known that the Supreme Court had directed the implementation of police reforms in the year 2006, but these states (except Kerala to some extent) have remained pseudo-compliant till now.
- The Government of India has never shown seriousness for complying with the judicial directives, even the Delhi Police Bill has failed to finalize it.
Measures to improve internal security
- Firstly, there is a need for immediate improvement in the intelligence system from the national level to the local level.
- The National Security Council and the Cabinet Committee on Security should formulate an effective counter strategy against the security threats posed by Pakistan intelligence agency ISI. Our strategy should be more proactive than reactive.
- The central government should be made aware of the need for all state governments to prioritize the subject of security management by them.
- The state government should pay special attention to the implementation of development plans at the time when the security forces are carrying out anti-Naxal and counter-terrorism operations. The SAMADHAN initiative is a commendable step in this direction.
- Modernization of the police force of the states needs immediate attention.
- Coordination should be ensured among the regulatory agencies concerned to deal with economic offences. The ‘Central Bureau of Economic Intelligence’ can play a major role in this regard.
- Work should be done to get international and international cooperation to tackle organized crime.
- For cyber security, special provisions should be made in every department along with the amendment in the IT Act and strict punishment should be made.
- The border needs to be managed and monitored with technical assistance.
- The Government of India needs to formulate a ‘Composite National Security Policy’. Through this policy, a ‘Central Ministry of National Security Affairs’ and a separate Central Service called ‘National Security Administrative Service’ should be set up.
Certainly, the government has made partial efforts in this direction, such as the establishment of the National Security Agency, the establishment of the National Security Council of India, the establishment of the Defense Planning Committee, etc.
But all these bodies are functioning at their respective levels. There is a need for such a policy and a structure that can carry all these together. Today the situation is such that it has become difficult to distinguish between external and internal security. The real threat to our security is from covert operations, insurgent and terrorist activities.