Chief minister Prithviraj Chavan on Thursday emphasised the need for security establishments to monitor the social media to counter terrorism, while speaking at the annual two-day national seminar on counter terrorism held at the Maharashtra police headquarters.
“There are certain elements who try to create disharmony and to destabilise the economy. The recent use of the social media to create dissent and communal strife, through the posting of video clips, photographs and hateful messages, shows it is an important front that we should focus on,” Chavan said.
State home minister RR Patil, who also addressed the seminar, which has 60 IPS officers from across the country participating in it, said the Maharashtra police force will see a lot of recruitment. Over the past five years, 55,000 personnel have been inducted, and in the next five years, another 60,000 personnel are expected to be added to the force, Patil said.
Sanjeev Dayal, director general of police (Maharashtra), said: “What we [state police forces] need to have is a well-worked plan at all levels. Also, new initiatives have to be taken to interact across communities to ensure communal harmony.”
Chavan said problems such as fake currency and cyber attacks should be the key points of focus, apart from countering direct terrorist attacks.
The CM stressed the need to improve the intelligence-gathering and information-sharing mechanisms and co-ordination between the state and central agencies and special units, as well as international agencies. “We need to have an extensive database that we should collate and share between agencies,” he said.
Chavan used the platform to also talk about the need to standardise equipment across the country. “If there is a standardised list for equipment, weapons that is relevant and low cost, it would become simpler for the state government to purchase items in
smaller quantities as needed,” he said.
Kuldeep Sharma, director general of Bureau of Police Research and Development, said: “I would strongly recommend that a group be formed to identify technology that
will be accepted across the country.”