Sanjha Morcha

BRIG PRAHALAD, Chairman Sanjha Morcha & President UFESM(Pathankot) BRIEFS ESM OF VILLAGE-jandi-chaunta on GOG

One of the Commitment by Capt Amarinder Singh that ESM will be be employed in a constructive role and will be  assisting him in Punjab Governance .Accordingly very soon GOG ( Guardian Of Governance) OR Khushali De Rakhe is going to roll out soon.

Sanjha Morcha teams are already spear heading in briefings the ESM about GOG, to make them aware about their future Roll in uplifting the Punjab Adminsitration to be effective and react timely  and to fight against the corruption virus prevailing at all level of Punjab kindly curiosity Badal Clan.

Once ESM become part of the administration as eyes and ears of Chief Minister Punjab , the rest of the commitment made to ESM will be implemented however they are in the Pipe Lines. Certain ESM having affiliation to APP Party and FJP party of JM are provoking ESM and making  false statements for demanding early Implementation  of Commitments

Its Sad that such ESM are still Playing in the Hands of Politicians for their vested Interest instead of cooperating and participating to curb the corruption from Punjab.

Brig Prahalad Singh, Chairman Sanjha Morcha  is doing a great Service in Apprising the ESM of various grants they are entitled and other benefits they are suppose to Claim along with GOG briefing

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IMG-20170830-WA0047 (1) IMG-20170830-WA0048 (2) IMG-20170830-WA0049


Live To Fight Another Day: That Is What The Mutual Withdrawal From Doklam Means by Lt Gen Syed Ata Husnain

Live To Fight Another
Day: That Is What The Mutual Withdrawal From Doklam Means

SNAPSHOT

What should make us all happy is that the Prime Minister is going to BRICS Summit without having to be worried about the borders.

After all it’s always good to live to fight another day; where and how soon, only time will tell.

Authorised media in both India and China has announced that both nations have been in diplomatic engagement, as a result of which there is mutual agreement to disengage troops from the Doklam Plateau. The latter landmark, with which much of the Indian public now appears familiar, lies at the eastern edge of the Chumbi Valley and is a territory belonging to Bhutan.

In June this year, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) decided to construct a road through the plateau, which it claims as its legitimate territory, to bring its logistics reach nearer the Indian post of Doka La near the tri-junction, where the boundaries of India, Bhutan and China meet. By doing this the PLA was in effect also improving its operational and logistics capability to threaten India’s highly strategic and vulnerable sliver of territory called the Siliguri Corridor. This corridor provides India the only land access to its seven north eastern states. The PLA activated this front after an interval of time through this road construction.

However, Indian troops crossed over to Bhutanese territory and prevented further construction of the road. A 72-day standoff ensued which has had both countries and much of the international community on tenterhooks. It was a strange military standoff, where both sides maintained their balance, did not resort to any physical shootouts and apart for the initial jostling between the troops (and on India’s Independence Day a more serious exchange of stones, sticks and fisticuffs in a different area) only continued to attempt staring each other down. That was on until the announcement on 28 August 2017 that mutual disengagement had been agreed upon.

A few more issues of the background may be relevant for full public comprehension. This standoff was not anywhere on the un-demarcated Line of Actual Control (LAC) of which perceptions differ and which leads to transgressions into each other’s perceived territory. This was on a third country’s territory and India has the 2007 agreement with Bhutan for mutual assistance in the event of threats to each other’s security.

The PLA has gradually increased its activities of transgression over the last 15 years or a little more. There have been standoffs in Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh too, but none have had this kind of vitriolic backing of crude psychological warfare through the instrument of the official media in China; both Global Times and People’s Daily carried typical government drafted messages without any subtlety and Chinese television channels included commentaries by some analysts in terrible English. That the standoff has ended is a reflection of maturity on part of the two countries despite the fact that China had made it clear that there was no way its troops would leave the Doklam area.

It has happened before the BRICS Summit coming up early next month in the Chinese city of Xiamen, where Chinese President Xi Jinping will play host to the important club of middle powers. One of the reasons for the mutual disengagement appears to be the potential embarrassment to Xi Jinping in his stewardship of the summit. That obviously is the whole reason. I did appreciate that the standoff would probably continue at lower level of displayed energy right through to the 19th Congress of the Chinese Communist Party where Xi Jinping’s future power and status will be decided.

Quite obviously, the PLA’s gambit had not worked and although it adopted the concept of war under ‘informationised’ conditions over two decades ago, its crude handling of psychological warfare proved ineffective. If anything, it hardened India’s resolve to risk what may be called ‘sticking it out’.

The standoff moved through some interesting strategic moments. While China expected India to withdraw forthwith due to a perception of the latter’s supposed weak military disposition, it did not have a ‘Plan B’ ready that would cater for the eventuality of India deciding to stick it out. Fresh from its perceived strategic success in the South China Sea, and after defying the ruling of the international tribunal, China possibly felt it could ride rough shod over India. It hoped to appropriately send India a message by embarrassing it in a military confrontation; that message was equally for nations with whom India is in potential league for strategic partnerships, Japan in particular.

As the standoff progressed into a long stalemate, the advantage appeared to shift to India creating a situation, where a mutual disengagement through diplomatic negotiation would end to India’s moral advantage. The inability of an adversary to achieve its strategic aim is long considered a victory by the other side. However, care needs to be taken not to call this disengagement a victory for India.

The term ‘victory in conflict’ (and the conflict spectrum does classify this standoff as a conflict) is one of the most debated terminologies in military parlance. The management of victory isn’t the easiest even for the most seasoned diplomatic corps or military because it has negative spinoffs which can hardly be perceived immediately. Thus the situation may well be termed as ‘advantage India’ without spelling out the domain, diplomatic or military. While many may contest this and hawks would like to project victory for various reasons, they need to be cautioned because this is not the end of Sino-Indian confrontation. The likelihood of needling and triggering similar or near similar situations through ‘walk-ins’ across the LAC in other areas such as Ladakh, Barahoti and Arunachal Pradesh, would remain live.

India’s strategic analysts must not be drawn into the victory defining game and would do much more justice if they pressurised the government to ensure that the long-pending and slowly-progressing border infrastructure is hastened as much as the acquisition of hardware and ammunition for which sizeable recent financial allocations have been made. It must not return to business as usual in these crucial fields. What is even more important is not to be led away to believe that only quiet diplomacy succeeds.

In future situations, the possibility of the intense need for a developed and well thought through communication strategy may be a virtual compulsion. How is this to be done and which body, institution or organisation has the professional expertise to undertake this is a question mark. This time China did not use its force multipliers such as cyber warfare but possibly tested some models in the live environment. The next time this will be a crucial domain and India must step up its expertise in this through a combination of military cyber and information capability, largely manned through civilian intake. That will deliver permanence and specialisation at the cutting edge, while uniformed personnel can lend it a military orientation.

One of the earliest analyses of the Doklam standoff done by me suggested a line that China would keep India engaged at the land boundaries through unresolved border disputes and frequent standoffs. The purpose of these operations would be to lend weight to India’s obsession with continental security. The urgency with which India needs to ramp up its maritime capability cannot be over emphasised. That will have China worried especially if strategic partnerships with the US, Japan, Australia, Vietnam and South Korea are established in the maritime domain, and Malabar-type exercises get progressively enhanced in scope. After all, as they say, China is still a landlocked country; its access to the Pacific does not give it the advantage it seeks. It is the Indian Ocean that it looks at. The Indian Ocean has a distinct Indian advantage and China’s worries about its energy security and trade stem from that.

At the end of the day what should make us all happy is that the Prime Minister is going to BRICS without having to be worried about the borders. After all it’s always good to live to fight another day; where and how soon, only time will tell.


Functioning of CSD outlets Lt Gen Raj Kadiyan,Chairman writes to COAS

letter

 

 

Lt Gen Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM (Retd)

Chairman

Email: rajkadyan8@gmail.com

Telephone:    09811226676

 

Vet/CSD/2017                                                                                      26 Aug 2017

To:

 

General Bipin Rawat, UYSM, AVSM, YSM, SM, VSM
Chief of the Army Staff                                         
Integrated HQ of Ministry of Defence (Army)

South Block, New Delhi-110011

Functioning of CSD outlets

 

  1. This is to bring to your notice the problems being faced by the veterans with respect to the unit run canteens. As learnt through interaction with canteen managers, there are presently three limitations imposed on the canteens. These are:
  1. The limit laid on the individual canteen cards. These are in terms of financial limit for groceries and in terms of units in liquor.
  1. There is also a monthly limit on how much a URC can buy in a month. This is in contradiction of (a) above. Based on the dependency, Gurgaon canteen for example, should be buying goods worth Rs 7 Crore every month to meet the demands of all veterans. However, his monthly purchase limit has been pegged at Rs 2 Crore. This leads to shortages and of late it is not unusual to see empty shelves in the canteen.
  1. Restriction on URCs of buying only once a month from the depot. This causes three problems. Firstly, the URC must have enough funds to buy the monthly quota in one go. Secondly, it leads to a storage problem, particularly for URCs functioning from small spaces. Thirdly, there is almost unmanageable rush of buying on the day following the date of collection.
  1. It is recommended that optimally, collection of stores from the depots should be allowed thrice in a month.
  1. It is learnt there is also a (new) requirement to get the canteen demands countersigned by a ‘brigade commander’. This is likely to cause an administrative delay in case of URCs located in remote areas far away from a formation commanded a Brigadier. This may kindly be reviewed, more so, since we have experienced veterans managing the canteens.
  2. AIbEiAIAAABDCPTLtYO_nOaJNyILdmNhcmRfcGhvdG8qKDgxY2NiNzYwYzcwZGUwMTY1YWQwNzZlODU5ODVhMDM0YTE3MjcwN2YwAcUV_kHCp8VJa-6VmfMQ1VqHUueY

Lt Gen Raj Kadyan


Jaish is back, with deadly effect

Jaish is back, with deadly effect
Army men near the police complex in Pulwama which came under Jaish attack on Saturday. Tribune Photo

Azhar Qadri

Tribune News Service

Srinagar, August 30

At the crack of dawn on Saturday last week, three fidayeen militants stormed a heavily fortified police installation in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district. Their intention was to go for the maximum kills and their message was terse: Jaish-e-Mohammad is back, and it has the capability to mount deadly attacks deep inside the Kashmir valley.The Jaish, which faced near extinction of its cadres in the Valley till recently, has made a quiet entry in recent months into south Kashmir — the epicentre of the region’s new-age militants.The police now estimate that the Jaish has around a dozen militants in south Kashmir who operate in three units, one of which moves around the fringes of Srinagar.“We have reports that their two groups (with possible strength of six to eight) are floating in south Kashmir and one may be on the fringes of Srinagar,” Kashmir IGP Muneer Khan said, adding that another Jaish unit was suspected to be hiding in Tral sub-district.The Jaish militants operating in south Kashmir are believed to have infiltrated this year, with the latest unit of six to eight militants that operates around Pulwama town suspected to have infiltrated only a month ago. Abdul Mateen and Muhammad Bhai, both foreigners, are believed to be commanding the Jaish in south Kashmir, police sources said.The sudden surge in the Jaish strength in the Valley comes after years of lying low; even though, in recent years, it had launched devastating attacks against security installations along the Line of Control and the International Border.The Jaish was formed in January 2000 by militant cleric Maulana Masood Azhar, days after he along with two others were released in Kandahar, Afghanistan, in exchange for release of passengers aboard the hijacked Indian Airlines plane IC-814. Azhar had spent six years in Indian jails before his release in December 1999.The group had emerged on the militant scene in Kashmir within months after its formation and marked a dramatic escalation in the conflict. The first attack, which signalled its arrival, targeted the Army’s 15 Corps Headquarters in the city here when an 18-year-old Srinagar boy detonated a car bomb outside its main entrance in April 2000.However, the militant group faced an existential crisis in the aftermath of 9/11 attacks on the United States and as Pakistan became a frontline ally in the ‘war on terror’, the Jaish faced desertions with its leadership staying quasi-neutral.In subsequent years, the Jaish strength came down and by July 2013 it had only eight cadres left in the Valley. The last known Jaish militants — Adeel Pathan and Chota Burmi — who operated in south Kashmir were killed in October 2015.So far, six Jaish militants — including the three foreign fidayeen, who attacked District Police Lines on Saturday last week — have been killed this year in south Kashmir. Two local Jaish cadres — both south Kashmir residents — have also died this year.Pulwama SP Mohammad Aslam told The Tribune that the police were investigating whether the three fidayeen, who attacked the police installation in which eight security men were killed last week, were part of the older group that was in the area for the past month or whether they had freshly infiltrated.“Some Jaish militants have managed to infiltrate and there is a movement of eight to ten militants in this area,” the police officer said.The entry of Jaish makes an addition to the number of insurgent groups and militants operating in south Kashmir, dotted with dense orchards and ringed by forests and mountains.Another police officer said the entry of Jaish militants would impact the overall security scenario in the region. “They are better equipped, better committed and better trained than militants from other groups,” he said.


Pak violates ceasefire in Nowshera

Jammu, August 30

Pakistani troops today targeted forward posts and villages in Rajouri district, officials said.Indian troops guarding the Line of Control retaliated and the exchange of fire between the two sides was going on when the last reports came in.Officials said the firing by Pakistani troops was reported in the Nowshera sector of the district around 10.35 am. There was, however, no report of any casualty, they said.Nowshera along with other sectors in Rajouri and Poonch have witnessed a sharp increase in truce violations by the Pakistani army this year.Hundreds of Nowshera residents are living in government relief camps at safer places since July after being displaced by cross-border shelling. On August 27, five persons were injured when Pakistani troops opened fire in the Shahpur sector of Poonch district.There have been 285 truce violations by the Pakistani army till August 1 this year. In 2016, the number was significantly less at 228 for the entire year, according to the Army figures. — PTI


The Army In Aid To Civil Authority: From Agitation To Agitation by Lt Gen Syed Ata Husnain

The Army In Aid To Civil Authority: From
Agitation To Agitation

SNAPSHOT

An overview of the Indian Army’s internal security duties – the hard and soft approach it adopts when there is a breakdown of law and order.

In the public mind, the deployment of the Indian Army in ‘aid to civil authorities’ remains a grey area and merits some explanation for education and confidence building. I am writing this because, on social media, I found myself at the receiving end of hundreds of queries as very few veterans get down to writing on such issues. With the complete breakdown of law and order a third time in Haryana, reliance on the Army in the public mind is a foregone conclusion. How does the Army function in such operations that are being repeated once too often for comfort?

I remember my days at the Indian Military Academy, where a lecture demonstration was conducted for Gentlemen Cadets (GCs) on Aid to Civil Authority each term. It was a fun demonstration with a short playlet added to it. We never took much of it seriously because rarely did one have to physically execute what one learnt. Today, it is different; I think the GCs would have to be prodded to remain awake and take notes, which may come in handy some day and that too very soon.

When is the Army called in (requisitioned) to aid the civil authority? The regulations permit civil authorities to requisition the Army for controlling law and order, maintaining essential services, assisting during natural calamities such as earthquakes, and any other type of help that may be needed by the civil authorities. The scope in this commentary does not include assistance in natural calamities, and essentially looks at the law and order and maintenance of essential services. The state should always depend on the steadfastness, technical capability and leadership of its armed forces to save as many lives as possible in natural disasters. In such circumstances, the simultaneity aspect is as important so that all resources of the state are deployed for the people’s safety; overkill in such contingencies has its advantages.

However, the situation is different in the case of law and order. The Army remains the resource for employment as a last resort as both the central and state governments have police forces available to them who are designed and maintained for this very purpose; that is the broad principle and it should be rare for soldiers to come to such aid as there is such a plethora of police forces. This issue is discussed later in the commentary.

An issue needing clarification at this stage is the difference between the Army acting against mobs in Kashmir and in Haryana. Regulations for the Army, Chapter VII, Paragraphs 301 to 327 and Manual of Indian Military Law, Chapter VII lay down the guidelines for the routine aid to civil authorities. It does not give the Army the right to be the decision-makers, except in deciding what means they will employ to bring the situation under control. They are to be always accompanied by civilian magistrates, one with each column, who discern the severity of the situation and give written or verbal instructions (to be followed in writing or corroborated by two witnesses) to quell a mob or bring any situation under control. The magistrate does not have the power to direct the Army authorities on the means to be employed; for that the local column commander or his Commanding Officer (CO) are the empowered authorities.

In the case of Kashmir or any other area it is different. Afflicted by intense terrorist activity and anti-national sentiment bordering on existential threats to the integrity of the nation, there is a need to empower the Army to operate on its own without the presence of a magistrate. This is because the Army is deployed on 24×7 duty and cannot await arrival of magistrates or written orders to act upon intelligence, which is generated from time to time at different levels.

To legally authorise the Army to operate in this mode, legislation such as the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) is enacted by Parliament. AFSPA – 1990 for Jammu and Kashmir empowers the Army among other things to operate without reference to civil authority. This issue came to the fore in 2008 when the Army was requested to come to the aid of civil authorities to control the huge stone-throwing mobs during the Amarnath Shrine Board agitation. Since the Army was already deployed under AFSPA – 90, there was no need for any requisition and no need for any accompanying magistrates. That is valid even today.

What the public may be unaware of is that in every formation and unit of the Army, there is a folder marked ‘Aid to Civil Authority’. There is a quarterly stock taking of the checklist and at least once in six months or every time during relief of a unit, liaison is carried out with the local Deputy Commissioner and Senior Superintendent of Police, while the formation headquarters does the same at a higher level. If there is a warning of an impending law and order issue, like it was this time in Sirsa, Panchkula or other towns, units immediately stop all other activity and get into internal security (IS) mode, although classically this is not IS duties. Each unit has some steel boxes kept aside and marked for quick retrieval with items required for such duties; these include necessary forms to be signed by magistrates, a copy of the Manual of Indian Military Law and Regulations of the Army, town maps and charts, lists of names of all civil officials with telephone numbers, loudspeakers and megaphones. Warning signs on placards and flags with poles are kept in unit mobilisation stores, along with broad white tape, angle iron pickets and bundles of concertina wire coils.

Off late it has become necessary to fabricate barricades, which can be set up rapidly to keep mobs at bay. Troops operate from behind these barricades or wire obstacles to prevent being overwhelmed by mobs. However, troops never open indiscriminate fire on unarmed mobs. It is under strict control of the senior most functionaries. The magistrate has no authority on them as to the means they use. He can only request that the mob be dispersed. Minimum force, impartiality and good faith are the basic guiding principles, which are to be applied after the necessity for such call up or requisition has been established. Usually the authority to approve deployment for such duties lies with the Army HQ (MO Directorate), who is in touch with the Ministry of Defence (MoD). Once deployed, the authority to operate gets delegated according to the need.

The issue is how soon the Army should be called up in an impending situation of dilution of law and order. Take the current Panchkula situation as a case study. The intelligence was crystal clear. The police authorities should have displayed more professionalism to assume that since they did not get directions to disperse the over one lakh supporters, who had concentrated near about the courts, every single supporter was a potential member of a mob which could go violent. They did not identify the leadership who should have been detained to leave the mobs leaderless. In such an eventuality they went wrong in the assessment of the strength of policemen required. If that was also not wrong then obviously the police showed little pluck and even less leadership in controlling violence once it commenced. All this while, the Army authorities would have been in constant touch. Officers at different towns would be sitting at police control rooms to get a better idea and pass on the earliest warnings based on their own assessments. This was undoubtedly done because the Army takes these things rather seriously. With mistakes made galore by the administration there was no other option but to call up the Army, which became once again the virtual first responder.

The Army has to be always careful about assessing how much manpower to deploy. Under strength deployment will not achieve the ends and the Army itself will get a bad name. An optimum figure must be arrived at and involvement of senior leadership in such a decision process is necessary. I questioned the decision regarding six columns sent to Panchkula. It was too little. You cannot have a situation of reinforcement in driblets. The decisions have to be bold and correct even if there is a slight overkill.

When the Army deploys in the face of ongoing violence, it has no time to undertake flag marches. It just gets into action. It will never run after mobs. The task is to disperse unlawful assembly and protect public property. Its presence must send home a message of the state’s intent to maintain law and order at any cost. However, contingencies can arise when the situation gets out of hand and becomes extremely dangerous with mobs not deterred. It is then the task of the Army to calibrate violence to control the situation. Its officers know how many notches they need to go higher in the intensity of violent means used for such control. It is only under the extreme contingency of threat to itself that the Army column may open fairly heavy fire; this fire will always be single rounds and not in automatic mode.

One aspect needs to be clarified. The police forces must not include Army resources in their ‘troops to task’ to ascertain that they have sufficient strength. If that mistake is made then you can deploy a hundred policemen in Panchkula and depend on 5,000 troops from Chandimandir to assist them. That is no professionalism. The Army is for extreme contingencies, when the police are being overwhelmed. The Army’s arrival and flag march must send the message that the degree of violence will increase if necessary. The police use batons, lathis and tear gas; before firing they warn by firing in the air. The Army does none of this. It fires below the knee, on ring leaders after giving adequate warnings. This concept must be known to the public, especially that element of the public, which tends to break law and order. This is what needs to be constantly announced by megaphones and during curfew by doing rounds of the neighbourhoods.

Army personnel take out a flag march to handle the situation as Jat community protests on the roads demanding reservations in government services on 20 February 2016 in Rohtak, India. (Manoj Dhaka/Hindustan Times via GettyImages)
Army personnel take out a flag march to handle the situation as Jat community protests on the roads demanding reservations in government services on 20 February 2016 in Rohtak, India. (Manoj Dhaka/Hindustan Times via GettyImages)

It is interesting to remember what happened during the Jat agitation just 18 months ago, from which no lessons appear to have been learnt. We had the ridiculous situation, where the Army had to prove to the public that it had actually arrived, by displaying placards above their heads saying ‘ARMY’ in oversize lettering. Why was this ridiculous action necessitated? Shri Prakash Singh, the highly respected former Director General of Uttar Pradesh Police, who investigated the failure of police effectiveness in the Jat agitation of 2016 also observed that the Army’s arrival did not make the same impact as before.

There was a single reason for this. All and sundry in the police forces have over a period of time adopted the Army’s system of wearing disruptive pattern clothing for operations. Thus the Army, out of the olive green uniforms, looks akin to every other force. Any and everyone even from state police forces wears myriad jackets and caps of the Army pattern. The exclusivity of the force, which is separate (the Army) and works on a different concept of operations needs to have a distinct appearance in such operations. It won’t be long before a public interest litigation (PIL) will probably be lodged on this subject by some worthy.

Lastly, I do believe that the Army to be effective without resorting to violent means has to project itself impeccably. It must take initial guidance and have police liaison personnel with it but thereafter its actions have to be seen to be decisive and with a moral ascendancy of its known discipline. To that end whenever I was responsible for such actions I insisted that the Army’s vehicles would appear absolutely clean and well maintained, with well rolled camouflage nets, looking professional and ready to go. The soldiers must project the best demeanour and they must be rehearsed for this. They must make a difference by also displaying the greatest empathy for women and children, the sick and the old. If necessary they must use their authority to allow milk stocks for children and restock medicine shops. The Regimental Medical Officer is the most important asset in such circumstances as he or she ensures that medical assistance is always available to the needy.

These are a few basics which emerge from experience and must remain in focus for effectively projecting the professionalism of the Army and its soft power capability. After all, at the end of such operations the people must remember that soldiers are a breed apart, hard where required and the softest when needed.


Doklam, dera & more KC Singh BJP’s missteps have outnumbered its successes

Doklam, dera & more
Under Fire: The biggest setback is the mishandling of the Ram Rahim episode.

KC Singh

PAST fortnight has been a mixed bag politically for the BJP. The setbacks outnumber the lone success at handling the Doklam imbroglio effectively.  The list of missteps is long — the nine Bench judgment of the Supreme Court holding the right to privacy as a fundamental right, on which the government unconvincingly pirouetted to claim it favoured the right anyway. Trouble simmers in the Centre’s arranged marriage between two factions of the orphaned AIADMK, ignoring that Jayalalitha’s conscience-keeper Sasikala, though jailed, still possesses the legacy and vast resources. Honeymoon for another marriage — BJP and JD-U in Bihar — is interrupted by the news of a fodder scandal II that may singe two union ministers and worthies in the state alliance. The BJP’s perennial nemesis, Arvind Kejriwal, has scored a decisive win in the Bawana byelection, putting paid to attempts to marginalise him. Among the reasons is growing job losses in the informal sector due to GST implementation, hitting Poorvanchalis the most.The biggest setback has been the mishandling of the Gurmit Ram Rahim episode. The Haryana Government’s pandering to him by letting him mass-gather followers at Panchkula and then permitting him to careen through the heartland of Haryana in a 200-car motorcade was a blatant attempt to intimidate the judiciary. The high court, particularly the bench of acting Chief Justice Saron, held the Haryana administration’s feet to the fire. Then special CBI judge delivered the coup de grace by upholding the might of the law. The BJP defence that the Chief Minister was beyond reproach as the outbreak of violence was controlled in hours ignores that nearly 40 lives were lost. This was not sensible policing. It was enforcement of law of the land by massacre. The governments in Chandigarh and Delhi may or may not introspect on their lapses, but the region needs to examine why common folks are flocking to the deras of conmen masquerading as messengers of God. Gurmit Rahim displayed not only extremely flawed moral sense, but even cowardice when he fell sobbing on hearing the verdict. Clearly, this was no messenger of God that humanity worships. Studies done globally on the rise of cults or alternative faith systems have arrived at different conclusions about why people flock to them. Most are idiosyncratic groupings that are generally peaceable, but some have turned violent. What makes deras dangerous in India is their ability to turn their followers into electoral behemoths that political parties woo. Dera Sacha Sauda leadership has been a political pestilence in Punjab and Haryana for two decades, blackmailing and bargaining for greater power and affluence. The fault lay with both states, which did not cater to marginalised beings, and organised religions, including Sikhism, which did not make many of their adherents stakeholders in their institutions, or sometimes even welcome in their places of worship. One baba jailed will not change the fundamental socio-religious deficiencies, which will invariably breed the next ‘Love Charger’.The only good news for the BJP comes from the successful handling of the Doklam standoff. The differences in statements by the two sides can be ignored as both needed face-savers. The crucial test of success would be if indeed China abandons attempts to build a road or infrastructure in an area vital to Indian security. The issue needs deeper analysis.Henry Kissinger is a great resource for reading the Chinese mind having interacted with all five generations of Chinese leaders, beginning with Mao. In his book On China, he narrates Mao Zedong telling his military brass on the eve of their 1962 attack on India that the two nations had already fought ‘one and a half’ wars. The first war was during Tang Dynasty (618-907) when China sent troops to help a kingdom counter a usurper. The second was the Mongol sacking of Delhi 600 years later, on the assumption that China and Mongolia then were part of the same political entity. The lesson that India needs to draw from this is that China views events through the prism of history and on a millennium long scale.Later in his book, Kissinger analyses the Chinese diplomatic strategy, explaining that diplomacy for them is the weaving together of political, military and psychological elements in an overall strategic design. Personal equations do not affect their calculations, except where necessary to advance their interests. Hence, PM  Modi sharing a swing with Xi Jinping in Ahmedabad would have minimal effect on power play at the border. Above all, China acts with suddenness after making time their ally.The Chinese did strategic cost-benefit calculations about Doklam. Threats and fire-power drills were not affecting India; the US and Japan were threatening war against a recalcitrant Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, unwilling to listen to Chinese advice; India had begun investigations against Chinese companies for suspected Indian data transfer off-shore; trade war would affect China more as their exports are nearly four times those of India; and President Donald Trump’s speech spelling out the new Afghan policy included kudos to India, imploring it to play a greater security role in Asia-Pacific. What finally clinched success for India was the shutting window for time as the BRICS summit was a week away and a boycott by PM Modi would have embarrassed President Xi on the eve of the crucial 19th Party Congress, where he names his new team and successor, if any.Paradoxically, while being resolute and unbending worked with China as geopolitics favoured India, the same when translated into cussedness domestically is bad politics. In a vast nation like India, policy making must be by building support and co-opting the Opposition. Retaining ineffective leaders like CM Khattar, or using whatever means possible to divide and pillory opposition turns the political environment toxic and the people sullen. The mood of the nation will swing away from the BJP government if the missteps persist. Doklam too could buy success in the short run as China, recalling Mao’s contextualisation of the 1962 War, has an elephantine memory. The writer is a former Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs


Manmohan Singh Had Backed CBI in Dera Chief Case, Says Investigation Chief

M Narayanan, retired DIG of the CBI, said after a lot of pressure from Punjab and Haryana MPs, former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh had summoned the then CBI chief Vijay Shanker to his office to discuss the case against Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh.

M-Narayanan-875

Bengaluru: The chief investigating officer in the rape case against Dera chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh has revealed that former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had ignored political pressure and given Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) a free hand.

“The then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh stood by the CBI and ordered us to go by the law. He went through the statement made by two Sadhvis before a judge and did not succumb to the pressures from Punjab and Haryana MPs. After a lot of pressure from these MPs, Manmohan Singh had summoned the then CBI chief Vijay Shanker to his office to discuss the case against Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. After seeing the victim’s statements before a judge, Singh backed us,” said M Narayanan, retired DIG of the CBI, who was the chief investigating officer in the rape case against Dera chief.
Narayanan has also praised his boss Vijay Shanker for standing up to Punjab and Haryana MPs. Speaking to News18, he said, “When powerful MPs asked him to drop cases against Ram Rahim, Vijay Shanker refused to do so. He backed us fully”.

A native of Kasaragod in Kerala, Narayanan was in Mysore on the day Ram Rahim was sentenced to 20 years in jail. Expressing satisfaction over the punishment handed over to the rapist, he said that Ram Rahim would also be convicted in other cases, including the murder of two people.

Talking about how his team conducted the investigation, Narayanan said, “The complaint was sent in 2002. But nothing had happened till 2007. Expressing serious concerns over the progress of the investigation, the Punjab & Haryana High Court took the CBI to task. It had even summoned the chief Vijay Shanker to court seeking an explanation. After that he gave us Sadhvis letters, files of the murder of journalist Ramachandra Chatrapati and Dera volunteer Ranjit Singh. He ordered us to go ahead and complete the investigation in just 57 days as ordered by the High Court”.

According to him the task was huge as Sadhvis letters were anonymous. “We came to know that between 1999 and 2002, over 200 Sadhvis had left the Dera because of sexual harassment. Finally we could trace just 10 victims. But they were married and did not come forward to lodge a complaint. We managed to persuade just two victims and filed charge sheet before a court in Ambala on the 56th day”.

He said that entering the fortress like Dera Sacha Sauda headquarters in Sirsa itself was a very difficult job. The CBI team led by him was threatened by the goons of Ram Rahim and they had to face a lot of hostility. Narayanan said that Ram Rahim was living like a medieval emperor in his so-called ashram (Goofa) surrounded by pretty women known as Sadhvis. Every night around 10 PM, the head Sadhvi used to get a call from him instructing her to send a Sadhvi to his bedroom and she used to force one of the Sadhvis selected by him to sleep with the “guru”. Narayanan added that Ram Rahim was extremely careful like a seasoned criminal and never used to leave any traces of his crime. “He had a collection of condoms and contraceptives in his room. He was a maniac, a real beast”, the investigating officer said.

“Ranjit Singh was a prominent volunteer at the Dera. After his sister was raped by Ram Rahim, both of them had left Sirsa. A few days later an anonymous letter reached Punjab and Haryana High Court. Suspecting that Ranjit Singh was behind it, Dera chief ordered his men to murder him. It has been proved that the pistol used by his murderers belonged to Dera manager. They had also left a walkie-talkie at the scene of crime. I am sure Ram Rahim will be convicted in these heinous cases too,” said Narayanan who had retired in 2009.

 


P’kula violence: War-like situation has to be fought like war, says HC

HANDIGARH: The Punjab and Haryana high court on Tuesday said the mayhem caused by followers of self-styled godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh last Friday was a “war-like situation” which had to be tackled accordingly.

HT FILEThe high court directed that no FIR registered by the two states during violence shall be cancelled without the permission of the court.The bench, comprising acting chief justice S S Saron, justices Surya Kant and Avneesh Jhingan, was responding to submissions of the dera counsel that security forces should have used rubber bullets to disperse the mob in Panchkula, rather than opening fire.

“You have to hit hard in riot…It was a war-like situation. It was to be fought like war,” the bench said.

Senior advocate Anupam Gupta, assisting the court, also said that he disagrees with the dera counsel as the entire Haryana would have burnt had the security forces not responded strongly to the situation.

However, some other lawyers assisting the court, including senior advocate Reeta Kohli, pointed out that most of those who died in firing had been shot in head and chest, which should not have happened.

The Haryana government claimed before the court that it did not remove the Dera Sacha Sauda followers from Panchkula ahead of the rape case verdict against sect head Gurmeet Ram Rahim on August 25, to ensure his presence before the court.

“He was using followers. Had we failed in ensuring his presence before court here, the casualties could have been of largescale in getting him from his dera in Sirsa,” state advocate general (AG) BR Mahajan said, while referring to the large gatherings of folowers, including the one seen at 7-acre dera in Panchkula.

The AG also said Ram Rahim’s accomplices tried to free him, when he was arrested at the court complex post-conviction.

“He was using his followers. Most of them did not know what may happen in Pacnhkula,” Mahajan told the high court.

“Use of force ahead of hearing could have been made as an excuse by him for non-appearance in court…Violence was managed by him.”

The court was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Panchkula resident Ravinder Dhull, a lawyer who had raised the law and order concerns and stated that over 1.5 lakh people had reportedly entered the district, despite prohibitory orders.

The bench, while pointing out to weapons, iron rods, petrol bombs, sticks seized in the aftermath of the Panchkula violence, questioned the AG as to how the state presumed that all of those who had came to Panchuka were there for a “peaceful gathering.”

The AG admitted that some “shortcomings” may have been there in handling the situation, but the intent was to prevent bigger damage which arsonists could have inflicted in such a situation.

PUNJAB, HRY TOLD TO FORM SIT

Meanwhile, the HC directed that to investigate all the FIRs registered at various places in connection with the dera violence, both Haryana and Punjab set up special investigation teams (SITs) of three officers each, to be headed by an officer not below the rank of additional director general of police (ADGP).

The court said no FIR registered by the two states during the episode shall be cancelled without its permission.

The HC bench also sought a detailed status report from the Haryana government regarding steps taken to sanitise dera centres, including headquarters at Sirsa. Earlier, Haryana stated that it was in the process of sanitising the dera headquarters. Justice Surya Kant said a lot of credit must be given to the central forces in controlling the situation.

Meanwhile, Mahajan informed the court that 1,039 people have been arrested and 63 FIRs registered, 103 dera centres sanitised so far.

‘DERA HEAD VEHICLES NOT SCANNED FOR WEAPONS’

The bench asked the Haryana AG as to who gave permission to Ram Rahim to come in a cavalcade of 200 cars, to which the AG said only two vehicles were permitted inside the court at Panchkula.

However, the AG admitted that the dera head’s vehicles were not scanned for weapons etc.