Recent Terror Attacks a Blot on Government: Home Minister
Terming the two recent blasts in Mumbai and Delhi as a "blot" on government's record, Home Minister P Chidambaram on Thursday said many homegrown modules are active across the country and several of them have acquired the capacity to make bombs.
"There are Indian modules too. They seem to have the capacity to attract radicalised youth to their fold... Many of these modules have acquired the capacity to make bombs," Chidambaram said addressing country's top police brass in New Delhi.
The Home Minister said some of these modules are loosely knit under an organisation called Indian Mujahideen (IM) and many old cadres of the banned Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) have transformed themselves into IM cadres.
"There are other Indian modules that espouse the cause of right-wing religious fundamentalism or separatism," he said while inaugurating the three-day annual conference of DGPs and IGPs organised by Intelligence Bureau.
While referring to the 13th July Mumbai and 7th September Delhi blasts, Chidambaram said "two terrorist attacks in the space of two months are indeed blots on our record".
"Naturally, the central government and the security forces have been severely criticised. While we accept the responsibility for the incidents and the legitimate criticism, it is our duty to set out the context in which such terrorist attacks take place," he said.
The Home Minister said no country in the world, including the United States, appears to be entirely immune to the threat of terror. The worst-affected were Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, he said.
"The epicentre of terror is Afghanistan-Pakistan (region). Four out of five major terrorist groups are based in Pakistan and three of them LeT, JeM and HM continue to target India," Chidambaram said.
The Home Minister said while many steps had been taken post 2008 Mumbai terror attack, many more were still needed to be taken.
"Have we done enough to build capacity since the Mumbai terror attacks? The answer is yes and no...yet, we have not done enough," Chidambaram said, adding there were still over 5,00,000 vacancies in state police forces besides many states were yet to enact the new police Act.
He said questions have been raised about the capacity, competence and commitment of the security forces and especially of the intelligence community.
"Doubts have been expressed about the investigations that are underway and especially of cases that remain unsolved. There is concern about the long time taken for completion of trials and conviction of the accused. Comparisons have been made between India and other countries, particularly the United States," he said.
Chidambaram said leaders of police forces and especially the intelligence community need to communicate more openly and more often to the people.
"I think it is necessary to tell the people what the police force in each state has been able to achieve in terms of capacity building, recruitment, procurement, training, induction of technology, intelligence gathering, solving cases and in maintenance of law and order."
"At the same time, the police forces must also convey that years of neglect have left security forces under-prepared to confront the multi-dimensional challenges that are before the country," Chidambaram said.