In recent times there has been a lot of political instability in West Asia and North Africa and have become the hub for ISIS terrorists. How should India address this issue with respect to Internal security? (250 words)
The continuing presence of Islamic State (IS) terrorists in West Asia, Africa and elsewhere should be seen as a serious warning by the countries in these regions. More than 10,000 Islamic State fighters are estimated to remain active in Iraq and Syria two years after the militant group’s defeat, and their attacks have significantly increased this year, according to reports of the U.N. counter-terrorism chief. The Islamic State extremist group — also known as IS, ISIL and ISIS — has regrouped and its activity has increased not only in conflict zones like Iraq and Syria but also in some regional affiliates.
Impact of ISIS on India
ISIS has been the most lethal, organized and modern terrorist organization who are using social media, internet to propagate their ideology. Its autocracies and pandemonium is well known across the world, especially in the Middle East. However, India has not been affected by ISIS barring few sporadic incidents. Few Indian youth, after being influenced and hypnotized by the structured propaganda of ISIS, have joined ISIS forces in Iraq and Syria. In addition to this, Mehdi Masroor was operating the twitter handle of ISIS from Bangalore in India. Apart from all these, India has neither faced any violent assault nor any lone-wolf attack on its land by ISIS. However, ISIS wants to attack India and convert it into Islamic caliphate of Khorasan in future.
India’s strategy towards ISIS
The ISIS can become the fulcrum of terrorism against India, thereby focusing the combined energy of different groups under its umbrella.
It can be supported by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), thereby providing it a well-established intelligence and logistic network, in a symbiotic relationship. · The social media campaign by ISIS is ideally placed to exploit alienated members of the society. This has already been witnessed to a lesser degree, in which a small number of people have volunteered to fight for the terrorist group in Iraq. This can potentially achieve sharper focus if it is brought to bear on Indian targets, especially in the immediate aftermath of communally surcharged incidents. · While India may be amongst the most challenging targets for a radical organisation like ISIS, given the strong roots of liberalism, democracy and secularism in the country, from the perspective of ISIS, this is a prize which could well tip the balance in its favour, not only in the region but also beyond. This could imply that the resources and energy likely to be employed against India will make the terrorist group amongst the most serious challenges faced by the country so far. · ISIS has foreseen the possibility of the US and its allies standing alongside India. However, past experience suggests limited cooperation by the US against terrorist threats specifically aimed at the country. It is more likely that it will be India’s fight for its safety and security on the basis of its resilience and capacity. · An e-book allegedly released by Islamic State (ISIS) across online jihadist platforms has made a direct reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, describing him as “a right-wing Hindu nationalist who worships weapons and is preparing his people for a future war against Muslims”.
Repatriation, prosecution, rehabilitation, and reintegration and the protection of the vulnerable have become ever more urgent.