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International concerns grow over the safety of the Indian Nuclear Arsenal

October 6, 2009

The Naxalite Threat

LONDON – Far removed from the photo-shopped images of ‘Shining India’, lies a dark and sinister shadow that stalks the Indian Republic. The spectre of the Naxalite threat now has middle-class urban Indians nervous as they watch increasingly worrisome media reports of the repeated failures of Indian Security Forces in containing the ‘red menace’ in the jungles and hinterlands of India.

What was once only a peripheral threat to the Indian State has now reached a critical mass that has left even the ivory-tower Indian elites in New Delhi with furrowed brows. An embarrassing problem once ignored and neglected has now broken out into the worlds glare. And rightly so. As the vigour of the Reds grows from strength to strength, and the impotence of the Indian Army and Paramilitary is increasingly apparent, questions are being raised of the safety and security of India’s nuclear weapons arsenal. Similar concerns were raised internationally only a few months ago when the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan were said to be within spitting distance of Islamabad and Pakistan’s own nuclear arsenal was seen as an obvious target. But whereas the Pakistan Army swiftly and efficiently routed the militants from a standing start within just a few weeks, their colleagues in India have struggled to contain an irresistibly growing Naxalite movement that has pledged to bring New Delhi down.

In fact, there are few parallels that can be drawn with the Pakistani case. Whereas the Pakistani militants numbers in a few thousand and were confined to a tiny fraction in the north of the country, their Indian equivalents boast ranks of at least 20,000 strong (and growing) and have had significantly greater success. Now infesting massive swathes of Indian territory, India’s Naxalite problem is the most prolific and violent insurgency in any nuclear armed nation, and leaves Pakistan’s recent troubles far behind in terms of the implications for regional and indeed international security.

According to Indian government sources, the insurgency, which started in 1967 as a peasant uprising, has now spread to 20 of India’s 28 states – and is showing no signs of exhaustion. A staggering 700 people, including civilians and police, have been killed in the rebellion so far this year, up from 638 in total last year. Observers may be shocked that such dangerous developments have been scarce reported in the world’s media, but in September the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh – probably on a break from being feted in world capitals – let the cat out of the bag when he described Naxalism as India’s greatest security threat, and said that security forces were failing to halt it.

With the rebel movement seemingly unstoppable, the international community is becoming increasingly vocal in its concerns of the very dangerous prospect of nuclear weapons falling into the hands of fanatical extremists. A the same time, the Indian government is desperate to save face and avoid derailing its recent global public relations blitz. Thus it is planning a major assault on the rebels across the four states where their presence is strongest. The move comes as new evidence emerges the Naxalites are stepping up their military and operational deployments as their successes have won them thousands of new recruits across the country.

But commentators are sceptical about what this new campaign can possibly achieve considering all of India’s recent botched attempts to stamp out the growing menace. Ajay Sahni, executive director of the Institute for Conflict Management in New Delhi, says Indian forces do not have the strength – in terms of “numbers, training, transportation, arms” – to gain control over such vast swaths of territory. “Until there’s been a steady, tremendous capacity-building, all deployments will be irrational,” he says. “It will just be a nibbling away at the peripheries, and a lot of security forces will be killed.”

As Indian forces are sent into the rebel-infested eastern states of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa, and Bihar, the world will watch with baited breath. It is too early to say whether international concerns over the security of the Indian state and nuclear arsenal will be alleviated, but considering past performance, the prospect does not look good. The Indian Army may buck past trends and achieve its objectives, but more likely, there will be a great deal of movement in international capitals as contingencies are drawn for the worst-case-scenario.

Atif F Qureshi  PKKH Editorial Team and www.PakDestiny.net

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13 comments

  1. sorry.

    no source no credibility


    • you need a source for what in this article? Are you denying there is no Naxal threat?


      • no but the idea indian nukes are endagered by them is laughably bad. only pkkh and zaid hamid can come up with them


      • how?


    • indian nuclear scientist was kidnapped and killed by whom no body knows.its serious concern pakistani media must raised this issue to the international observers.


  2. india is going the russia wa. indinas too wimpy to rule any country. they’re only obedient slaves. pakitan is willing to occupy india and bring bhindians under its control. Goodbye bhindia:))))


    • We all know what India is all about? India is nothing but a faked up state created by the west to use against Muslim state Pakistan, China and Russia. It was India who helped America to giving Russian inside out. So Russia should attack India for leaking its info to Americans and Britain.

      India is behind most of the terrorist attacks around. 9/11 is not the only one attack Israel and India has wedged on America. So Americans open your eyes. Britain, Israel and India are working amidst you. 9/11 was done by Israel and India. Both are foe states.

      People of the world would need to get together and help breaking down India into three separate independent states giving Muslims and Sikhs their own independent countries. India is stolen land from Muslims and we know eventually we will capture it, sooner or later.

      Pakistan must set up an investigation board into Indian scientist kidnapping and must form a way to find out how many times India has lost her atomic enriched uranium and registered as stolen?

      India is a big threat and her nuclear are not safe for the world. Any given day we will hear someone has taken over on India nuclear arsenals and what we are going to do then??? So we must and should counter India and strip her off India from her dangerous bombs that she cannot contain safely nor she can guarantee its safe keepings.


    • dream on faggot


      • shut up u pimpy Indiot
        There are more than 150 liberation movements and terrorist organizations in ur filthy piece of land u call Bharat.
        There are many chancces that nukes can go in their hands
        We all know Uranium got in their hands once and it was smuggled in hte black market


      • eXe, u guys can keep hoping for india to break up, but the reality is different.
        http://www.lankanewspapers.com/news/2009/6/45147_space.html
        Accept ur place in the new world


  3. These Naxalites are being helped by the Pakistani elements


  4. WHo cares who is helping them just find them and arrest them already and @shazman Khan were the hell are you getting your info from?


  5. india will b NO more in next five years INSHALLAH



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