By Rajendra Prabhu
The Central Government may dismiss the rockets found in the imported iron scrap as nothing more than some surplus war materials finding their way as scrap obtained from countries like Iran that had witnessed long years of conflict. But many security experts are not that sure.
These experts want to know the answers to the following questions: Why have the rockets in scrap been found only now as India has been importing scrap from many countries for several decades? Why were some of the rockets found in sensitive places like areas near schools? How can it be that rockets have been found at so many different places like Jaipur and Aligarh? Even if scrap dealers have dumped the rockets when they found these dangerous substances in their cargo after the rockets-in-scrap became a scandal, why dump them near schools? Why are the rockets in scraps found only in the north and not in the south? The importers might be innocent but are there other conspirators who used the import of scrap in containers as a good way of smuggling in explosives?
It seems the government view is that the presence of the lethal cargo was not intentional, and that most of the unintended cargo was not live. But experts are asking how could the government rule out the possibility of this non-lethal cargo finding its way into the hands of terrorists or purveyors of violence who would find ways of activating these rockets? Considering that many terrorist gangs have experts in explosives who booby trap vehicles and even human beings, nothing should be taken for granted. For instance, say the experts, these materials are enough to create a scare in a plane or other moving vehicles, or could be used for hijacking by manipulating airport security, or even for creating scare at many places simultaneously and holding the authorities to ransom.
Nation'ssecurity is at risk as UPA plays footsie with vendors of violence.
Even though the Government of Iran is very friendly to India, one cannot ignore totally the fact that Iran is one of the supporters of violent fundamentalists of the Shia origin. The terrorist outfits of Palestine like Hamas are funded and supported by Teheran. It is well known among anti-terrorism experts that just as Saudi Arabia is funding Islamic fundame-ntalism of the Wahabi school, Iran is funding similar organisations of Shia origin. Could it be that so much of dangerous cargo was exported from Iran without anyone in the government there being wiser to the threat this would pose to Iran-India relations when the Iran authorities have a tight control on everything, from commerce to education to electoral politics there? Recently it was revealed in the United States that the key person among Iraqi exiles who was advising the Bush Administration against the Saddam Hussein regime, namely Ahmed Chalabi, was a top level Iranian intelligence agent. Subsequent to that finding, the Bush administration has cut off Chalabi from all contacts with the US government. This revelation is a warning not to take anything on the surface as true.
The sudden flood of such spent and unspent arms into the country coincides with the sharp deterioration in the security situation in the Naxalite belt across five states, the reports of link up between the armed rebellion in the north-eastern states and Bihar with the Maoist rebels of Nepal and the government'sown intelligence reports about the incursion of arms and support for insurgents of north-east by forces in Bangladesh. The well co-ordinated attacks on innocent people in Assam and Nagaland totally shattered the government claim about the insurgency situation there.
Informed sources believe that the insurgent forces have been emboldened over the last few months for two reasons. They have achieved a great degree of co-ordination among themselves to stage combined attacks and the Congress sought the help of some of them in getting its candidates through entitling them for the pay-off in the immediate post-election time. Look at the tenor of the Bodo insurgents in offering unilateral cease-fire and talks. The offer appears as a concession to the government with the terms already defined, as if it is the insurgents who are on the top of the situation.