Monday, April 19, 2010

SECURITY FOR INTERNATIONAL SPORTS EVENTS

B.RAMAN


There are threats to the current and forthcoming international sports events in India from the following:


Indigenous terrorists acting on their own.
Indigenous terrorists acting at the instance of Pakistan.
Pakistani terrorists.




2.International sports events make attractive soft targets because of the large crowds, the participation of famous foreign sports personalities and foreign media coverage of the events. In the calculation of the terrorists, a successful attack at an international sports event will not only bring large publicity to their cause, but would also damage the credibility of the Indian Government and its security agencies.


3.The undetected planting of explosive devices outside the Bangalore cricket stadium before an India Premier League cricket match on April 17,2010, shows continuing deficiencies in our intelligence and physical security set-up despite the revamping of our counter-terrorism machinery post/26/11. Even if there has been an improvement in the counter-terrorism machinery of the Government of India, a similar improvement has not been there at the State level. In the US, the Department of Homeland Security has the total responsibility for security against terrorists anywhere in US territory. In India, the Ministry of Home Affairs of the Government of India has to share the responsibility with the States.This often weakens security particularly if different parties are in power in New Delhi and the States.


4.More than the IPL tournament,which ends on April 25, the Commonwealth Games due later this year should be a matter of great concern. Next to the Beijing Olympics of August 2008, it is going to involve the largest gathering of sportsmen and other sports personalities in Asia. If the terrorists want to attack it, they would have started their preparations by now by setting up sleeper cells and by finding out ways of infiltrating the stadia and games villages.


5.Pakistan and the Pakistani terrorist organisations would have a strong motive for attempting to disrupt the Commonwealth Games in order to create a poor image of the Indian organising capability as compared to the manner in which Beijing successfully handled the security of the Olympics. A full-fledged security set-up dedicated to the security of the Games should have been in position by now. One does not get the impression that this is so.


6.The decision to change the venue of the semi-finals of the IPL from Bangalore to Mumbai was inevitable, but was it done by the IPL managing committee after consulting the authorities of the Governments of India and Maharashtra? Do they have the required manpower and technical resources to handle two semi-finals and one final? The security drill should not be left purely in the hands of the State. The Government of India should play the leadership role in coordination and follow-up action.


7.The Govt. of India has been playing the leadership role in respect of the security arrangements for the Commonwealth Games, but one has the impression that this is not so in respect of the IPL matches. The security consultants to the IPL and the State Police seem to be handling the security with the role of the Govt. of India reduced to the minimum necessary. The Government of India should play a more active role after what happened at Bangalore.


8.In a statement made in the Lok Sabha after 26/11, Shri P.Chidambaram, the Home Minister of the Government of India, said that one of the reasons for the terrorists' success in Mumbai was because the responsibility for follow-up action was diffused. From what happened at Bangalore, one gets the impression that it continues to be diffused. We have not learnt the lessons of 26/11. ( 21-4-10)


( The writer is Additional Secretary (retd), Cabinet Secretariat, Govt. of India, New Delhi, and, presently, Director, Institute For Topical Studies, Chennai. E-mail: seventyone2@gmail.com )

4 comments:

Sarang said...

"We have not learnt the lessons of 26/11"

Sir, when we have yet not learnt the lessons of 1000AD (17 almost unopposed attacks by Mahmud Gazhni leading to 1000 years of foreign despotic rule on India) do you really believe we Indians will wake up just because of 26/11? Wishful thinking, Sir...plain wishful thinking!

Ram said...

Dear Mr.Raman,

IPL is a private tournament. Should not IPL owners be charged fees by State for providing security?Why should taxpayers pay for corporates and politicians to have fun and make money at their expense!!!!!!!


Regards

Ram

nri2008 said...

Dear Mr.Raman

1)In view of ongoing threat overt and covert by Pakistan and its terrorist cadre is it possible for the Government of India to declare all options are open in case of terror attack?
2)Does the Government of Idnia have the courage, determination and political will to destroy the terrorist nests in POK in such an event?

3)In case GOI fails in all these counts what is the use of all the empty threats as it serves no purpose and emboldens India's enemies and hands them propaganda victory about weak India in South Asia and the world? On Channel News Asia today news reports USA embassy has warned Americans from New Delhi from visiting New Delhi in view of impending terror attacks?Does this not damage India's image in view of Commonwealth Games?

4)Is it fair to leave India at the mercy of terrorist attacks t protect Indian interests to save the America blushes when it is clearly helping Pakistan which in turn is targeting Idnians not only in India but also in Kabul?

Does this not indicate lack of innovative thinking against India's 2 major enemies machinations and does the Indian elite have the capacity to take hard decisions? One feels parochial and narrow partisan interests of Congress party over rule national interests of India! Please do correct if impression of majority of Indians is wrong!

Warm Regards

NRI

Sarang said...

NRI,

You hit the nail on the head. UPA government simply does not have the motivation, courage, innovative thinking and will to fight any of the ills affecting the country today. Why only terrorism? Take for instance:
1. Terrorism (ofcourse)
2. Maoists
3. Chinese aggresssion and cyber warfare
4. American duplicity
5. price rise
6. rising crime, poverty
7. No control over the parliament in which themselves have a majority!!!!
.......and on and on.

The UPA government is in a paralysis. Personally, I hope in 2014 India should kick the congress party out (inspite of Rahul 'baba' Gandhi (Rajkumar and what not) being the PM candidate) just to teach them a lesson.

Sadly, I haven't felt proud of India in a long while!