Category: Terrorism

No negotiations with criminals

India should have a policy of no negotiations with criminals whether they are terrorists, abductors, kidnappers, hijackers, pirates or Maoists. The policy should be followed by central and state governments. The policy should be irrespective of who the hostage is. The hostage may be a minister’s daughter, engineer, doctor, collector, truck driver or someone else. It does not matter whether there is one hostage or there are many hostages. When the policy of no negotiations is declared and followed there will be no pressure on any government.

Since December 1989 when Rubiya Sayeed was abducted and five terrorists were released there have been many cases when India has surrendered to criminals and released prisoners or paid ransom. In recent years Maoists have abducted many people and state governments have released prisoners. The abductions continue.

In December 1999 a hijacked plane was allowed to take off from Amritsar and go to Kandahar. Three terrorists were released who caused many deaths later on.

According to a police officer, DGP Dinakaran, 20 crore rupees were paid as ransom to Veerappan when Rajkumar was abducted. He had said chief minister paying ransom is misconduct and not official secret. There was demand to release prisoners and it would have been met had not one retired police officer whose son had died in an encounter with Veerappan gang had gone to court and stopped it. The Government of Karnataka argued in Supreme Court that if the prisoners were not released there would be a law and order problem. The bench headed by S. P. Bharucha did not allow release of prisoners. The government was told if you cannot control you quit.

Many times criminals dictate who should be mediators and these mediators are their associates.
Sometimes TV channels show members of families of hostages crying. Once Vinod Mehta of Outlook said to Vikram Chandra of NDTV showing tears is pornography.

One instance when India did not surrender to terrorists was during 26/11. Whether there was any negotiation for sometime is debatable but there was no surrender and the terrorists were shot dead.

India should undo its mistakes. Criminals beginning with Rubiya Sayeed abduction case who demanded release of prisoners or ransom should be prosecuted. Rubiya Sayeed should be questioned about her abduction. All prisoners released should be asked to surrender within seven days failing which they should be declared fugitives dead or alive. S. M. Krishna who was chief minister of Karnataka must make public how 20 crore rupees were collected.

Murderer is not foot soldier

On 21/2/2011 Bombay High Court confirmed death sentence of Ajmal Kasab for his crimes during 26/11. Many people expressed happiness. Someone said he is a foot soldier and pawn and we have to concentrate or mastermind.

A murderer is neither a foot soldier nor a pawn. He is a criminal. A pawn does not have life. A man has life and he makes choices and should face the consequences.

There may be many criminals behind a crime who are not caught but that does not mean someone who is caught should be let off. Keeping a terrorist alive has the danger of leading to a hijacking or abduction and release of the terrorist.

When a TV channel gives publicity to the view that is soft on terror or terrorist that raises the question whether any lobbyist was behind that. TV channels may claim they want to be objective and give different viewpoints a chance but things are not what they seem. About 18 months back Lockerbie bomber was released from UK. About that time it was said that he had three months to live. The man is alive after 18 months and is expected to live 10 years. BP wanted to business in Libya and Lockerbie bomber was released to facilitate that. UK government was willing to help BP. One doctor gave the necessary certificate. Some journalists argued for the release of the bomber. Justice Secretary of Scotland ordered the release.

Pirates of Somalia

Over the years pirates of Somalia have expanded their sphere. From the coast of Africa to the coast of India there is no safe zone from the pirates.

UN, NATO, EU and AU have been ineffective in putting an end to piracy. When piracy began the demands of pirates for ransom were met. They became bold and piracy increased. More ships became targets. More Somalis became pirates. In few instances pirates were met with resistance and hostages rescued. EU countries let off pirates caught instead of putting them on trial. India, China, South Korea and USA have on occasions fought pirates.

Now the pirates are found around Lakshadweep. When Indian Navy encounters pirates all pirates should be shot dead. Those already caught should be charged with waging war, hijacking and abduction and put to death. There is no soft option.

Sailors in ships sailing in Indian Ocean should have training in use of weapons and must be provided with armour. They should take turns to guard ships.

Somalia has anarchy. Somaliland, in northwest Somalia, proclaimed independence in 1991 and has stability but is not recognized by other countries. There are double standards as such countries recognize Kosovo and supported referendum in South Sudan. Puntland, in northeast Somalia, proclaimed autonomy in 1998. India can recognize Somaliland and annex rest of Somalia. UN abandoned Somalia after some years. USA had a bad experience and withdrew its troops. Pirates should not have safe havens.