Not having a National Security Strategy is a terrific boon to the hierarchy, for where is the question of accountability. Without a strategy, national security can flow the way it wants, whose waywardness can best be figured out and capitalized by adversaries. Then of course, there cannot be any adversaries when they are being engaged in transactional activities at costs that can be deciphered any which way – what with morphing perceptions through both the paid and controlled media.
Huawei has an ongoing relationship with PLA and Chinese political leadership, and trains PLA units in networking design and construction.
Just last year, October 2012 to be precise, our National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS) issued a warning against Chinese companies especially Huawei and ZTE quoting IB reports that they are involved in the PLA project for strengthening army’s electronic warfare capabilities. ZTE maintains a diverse relationship with PLA encompassing collaborative research with military and civilian universities, including satellite navigation, data link jamming techniques, training of active duty PLA personnel, and as prime supplier of customized telecom service and hardware to the PLA. Similarly, Huawei has an ongoing relationship with PLA and Chinese political leadership, and trains PLA units in networking design and construction. Not that they we don’t have Chinese products in India – computer parts, telecommunication equipment, even pen drives and we don’t know what malware has been embedded in these at manufacturing stage, leave aside China’s bot armies. But lo and behold national dailies yesterday announced our Home Ministry has pulled out ‘all stops’ for Huawei and ZTE for investments in India. This is great going because rather than boosting indigenization, foreign imports facilitate much higher cuts and less chances of anyone getting wise. So, what is the motivation to ignore the NSCS caution, one can well surmise.
Comprehensive National Security (CNP) has multiple constituents; military security; political security; economic security; food security; personal security; health security; environment security; energy security; community security etc – all intertwined. Logically, any country should be specifically focused on each of these components to facilitate continuous and balanced growth of the CNP. But then CNP is possibly associated with China so why bother? Besides, we have engineered our own interpretation of all these so called components of CNP that in turn cater to our national security needs.
…for any country to have inclusive national security, a sustained economic growth of 8 to 10 percent is essential.
Take economic security. Speaking at the recent Security Conclave at the Delhi Gymkhana Club, Gautam Thapar, the only member of NSAB from the private industry, rightly stated that for any country to have inclusive national security, a sustained economic growth of 8 to 10 percent is essential. Not only have we failed to see the connection between economic security and national security, our interpretation of economic security appears to be ‘individual economic security’ (read individual prosperity) of a few that have sucked the nation dry. As per Dr Subramanian Swamy, the mischievous introduction of the devilish Participatory Note (nowhere used by any country) has permitted India’s mafia to siphon off Rupees 105 lakh crores and multiplying this money in share market has been made tax free by companies opened in Mauritius while in normal circumstances the tax on earnings is 30 percent. Incidentally, the total yearly collection (all types) in India amounts to only Rupees four lakh crores plus. The son of a lynchpin sits abroad making lakhs of crores playing Indian money with the fluctuating dollar-rupee ratio without any investment – main reason why this ratio continue to remain high. So much for economic security and how we can get to and maintain 8 to 10 percent economic growth rate is anybody’s guess. It does not appear possible despite fudging figures but perhaps FDI by Huawei and ZTE may help albeit at the cost of cyber security!
Political security (read individual party security) is comprehensively ensured with 1444 political parties already and figures rising. Just last week a former CAG mentioned during a book release they were 1330 in his time. Support can always be ensured through money power (remember the 105 lakh crores mentioned above), coercion, force, CBI and the like. The striking difference between Indian democracy and western democracies (including US and UK) is that the latter generally have two major political parties with perhaps a small sprinkling of few more. Naturally, a strong government and strong opposition can do wonders for the country. In our case, it is just a question of debating the good for the country and amending the Constitution where hundreds of amendments have already been made. But then how will we play our national game of ‘Political Skullduggery’ – dividing the country further on communal and cast lines, organizing riots, killings, orchestrating ethnic cleansing and spreading hate. Selective apprehension of minority hate mongers (visuals repeatedly displayed on national TV) who ‘initiated’ the Muzaffarnagar killings is one example. Criminalization of politics is not a new phenomenon. The country has witnessed it over the years including in the east and even in Punjab.
Personal security of the ruling hierarchy, mafia and cronies must be ensured. The mere fact that an Ordinance to shield convicted politicians was sent to the President says it all.
Interpretation of personal security is done similar to economic security. Personal security of the ruling hierarchy, mafia and cronies must be ensured. The mere fact that an Ordinance to shield convicted politicians was sent to the President says it all. Why bother about the common man when crime including rapes can hardly be coped with the teeming unemployed, inability to manage social change, easy smuggling of drugs (3.2 metric tons in 2009 as per World Drug Report) and some 40 million illegal weapons floating around the country, plus private armies of goons. Selective punishment and / or protection also has been drawn into the ambit of this distorted version of personal security, examples being one self-styled god-man is in jail for purported rape while an ex dairy minister for the same offence is not, even when caught in a sting operation bidding to pay off the victim some Rupees 2 crores. There is much jubilation about an ex Chief Minister jailed 17 years after his fodder scam but the euphoria may be short lived. In November 2006, the Union Coal Minister was found guilty of kidnapping and murder of his former personal secretary and was sentenced to life imprisonment in December 2006. A Delhi court rejected his bail plea, stating: ‘We cannot overlook the fact that the appellant has been convicted after a detailed and elaborate trial only in November 2006 and sentenced in December 2006.” The bench also noted that he was also being tried in a number of other cases, including the case of mass murder in his state. However, a higher court set him free in 2007. Then some jailed politicians unashamedly say even freedom fighters went to jail. But the moot point is that just jailing scamsters is meaningless unless their properties are attached, auctioned and the money they swindled is returned to the exchequer with interest under full public glare. Not doing so actually encourages others to indulge in more scams. Interestingly, media is already agog with news of another serving Chief Minister having allegedly accepted a bribe of Rupees one crore.
Food security is already ensured through the Food Security Bill for those lucky few who eat only grains and abhor vegetables etc. But they need to be lucky enough to actually get the grain in their hand, and which is not rotten like many schools dishing out mid-day meals to kids. Is our food security inclusive or a gimmick? Well if you are wearing a tie, you cannot be labeled nude – can you? Health security, particularly nutrition figures of children, would put bulk of the world to shame. Our environmental security was on display during the recent disaster in Uttrakhand, with the world witnessing prowess of our National Disaster Management Authority – crores down the drain? Energy security too is unique – large parts of the country in darkness, power cuts in entire country including the Capital, coal being imported despite India having the largest coal reserves in the world (some 267 billion tons) and Thorium, which is better and safer fuel for nuclear power and with India having 30 percent of global reserves, being illegally mined and siphoned off abroad. No one has been caught for the latter offence.
“India has never had it so bad. Stealing in government has never been this brazen. Government officials are now so audacious in their corrupt practices that they do not give a damn about who is watching. Supreme Court directives are routinely flouted. ”
So, before we go deeper into national security, let us look at governance, a term little understood by the high and mighty. Three years back, Mohan Murti, Former Europe Director CII wrote thus post attending a seminar on India’s Maoist insurgency in Europe, “Europeans believe that Indian leaders in politics and business are so blissfully blinded by the new, sometimes ill-gotten, wealth and deceit that they are living in defiance, insolence and denial to comprehend that the day will come, sooner than later, when the have-nots would hit the streets. In a way, it seems to have already started with the monstrous and grotesque acts of the Maoists. And, when that rot occurs, not one political turncoat will escape being lynched.” The reason such a seminar was held in Europe was because EU wants to invest in underdeveloped states of India. This year, the Brussels-based European Commission Standing Committee on Global Foreign Direct Investments last week listed the top 20 destinations the EU 27 will target for the next five years. Sadly, but for well-known reasons, India does not figure in the list. An editorial in German national newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine says, “India has never had it so bad. Stealing in government has never been this brazen. Government officials are now so audacious in their corrupt practices that they do not give a damn about who is watching. Supreme Court directives are routinely flouted. Crime rates are up and security of life including women’s safety, which is the first responsibility of every government, is at its lowest ebb. India must then be more than qualified to be called a failed state.” The German business newspaper Handelsblatt wrote: “For India, it seems clear that the hope of becoming one of the best twenty economies in the world will only remain a daydream. Corruption is the bane of the society. The Government knows this and the crusade against corruption is being handled with kid gloves.” But why bother about EU and Germans when the Indian public does not matter. Damn their FDI, we can always get it from China – barter territory or any which way.
What Ayub Khan made from ceding Shaksgam Valley to China is anybody’s guess.
There are many models of territorial transactions available. The Indonesian Cabinet has recently approved the purchase of a million hectares of land in Australia (four times the size of Australian Cattle Territory) so Indonesia can breed its own cattle on the land. The Australian cattle station would be run, or at least overseen, by one of Indonesia’s state-owned enterprises. Closer home we have Pakistan reportedly leasing out Gilgit-Baltistan to China for 50 years. Not that leasing out territory is new – remember Hong Kong and Macau? What Ayub Khan made from ceding Shaksgam Valley to China is anybody’s guess. The puzzle that needs to be solved is what novelty the current dispensation (inventors of ‘Participatory Note’, ‘Mauritius companies etc) has devised to benefit from transacting India’s territories? The NSA reportedly personally briefed the select trio of the now infamous India-Pak Track II Team to endorse withdrawal from Siachen. The Foreign Minister describes 30 kms deep intrusion “small acne on the face”. The Home Minister puts his foot in the mouth again, referring to the intrusion “we have no jurisdiction in the area” while the ITBP responsible for the area reports directly to him. The Defence Minister says we have “not given an inch of territory to China” faced with report by Chairman NSAB that reported Chinese firmly ensconced at Sirijap since 2007 and the Line of Actual Control constantly being pushed back, with media reporting an overall loss of some 642 square kms lost in Eastern Ladakh alone. Last month, media did a sting operation of wholesale unchecked illegal immigration along the India-Bangladesh border and the BSF officer openly admitting they have orders not to stop this – all shown on national TV. It is anybody’s guess the lakhs of crores being made through institutionalized illegal crossings and smuggling (including narcotics) through the various borders. Isn’t this the main reason why all land borders are not being put under the Army?
But the more pertinent question is that if the mafia has actually bled the country of 105 lakh crores, couldn’t they have an arrangement with China and Pakistan for transacting territory?
But the more pertinent question is that if the mafia has actually bled the country of 105 lakh crores, couldn’t they have an arrangement with China and Pakistan for transacting territory? Witness the Foreign Minister dashes off to Jaipur to host Raja Parvez Ashraf on a private visit against advice of his own ministry, not warranted by diplomatic protocol but more significantly in immediate aftermath of beheading of Indian soldiers in Kashmir by Pakistani military. The Foreign Minister goes to Beijing (despite an ongoing deep intrusion by PLA) to tie up visit of Chinese Vice President whereas it should be the Chinese Foreign Minister that should be doing so. While in Beijing, the Foreign Minister fails to mention the Chinese intrusion. The Defence Minister deliberately soft paddles cross border raid by Pakistani army saying ‘some people came in Pakistani army uniforms’ and later takes a somersault because of media uproar. The Home Minister refers to Hafiz Saeed in revered words and tone and the dispensation facilitating hardcore Hurriyat members to travel to Pakistan and hobnob with radicals. It is this covert business of transacting territory that perhaps has led to keeping the military out of national security related policy making, and not integrating MoD with the military. When did India have an NSA with military background? The Defence Minister has ensured that the military-industrial complex becomes more and more defunct, keeping the private industry at arms length. We have already reached a low where even assault rifles, carbines and LMGs have to be imported. Yet the Defence Minister pats his back with an underwater BrahMos test when everyone knows the submarine to fire it will get operational only by 2030 or so.
…why was our Embassy booking the venue? Why were we showing such eagerness in the wake of the dastardly terrorist attacks in Samba Sector?
Prior to the US visit of the Prime Minister, there was much media hype that Nawz Sharif wants to meet him. If that was the case, why was our Embassy booking the venue? Why were we showing such eagerness in the wake of the dastardly terrorist attacks in Samba Sector? It is well understood that lives of soldiers have no meaning in India but what about the civilians killed by Pakistani terrorists? The “Dehati Aurat” business apart, where was the need to follow through after Nawaz Sharif’s call for self determination in Kashmir at the UN General Assembly? We could have educated the UN General Assembly there and then that the 1948 UN Resolution on Kashmir, vide which Pakistan still demands, plebiscite, has categorical pre-condition that Pakistan withdraw all her security forces from territory of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) prior to plebiscite. Pakistan did the opposite and, unlike India, drastically altered demography of POK by design. To this we could have added results of first ever poll both sides of the Line of Control in J&K conducted by Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatam House), UK in conjunction King’s College during 2009-2010 which brought out that 98% of people in J&K do not wish to be part of Pakistan and 50% of people in POK do not wish to remain with Pakistan, the poll having been conducted on behest of Musharraf and financed by Gaddafi’s son.
Apparentky, we either cannot differentiate between being fearless and shameless or do not bother about being the latter for personal gains at the cost of honour and prestige of the nation. If former IAS officers Sanjeev Ahluwalia and Avay Shukla are asking the Prime Minister to step down, their write ups are directed more at the sleaze on which he presides, oblivious to the winds of change. An article in Manager, a leading German business journal, says, “Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has a natural inclination to be a follower, not a leader” though It doesn’t not elaborate who is leading him.
Now when all the components of CNP have been so adroitly manipulated, what are the fears about national security and why d