Experts highlight PM Modi’s integrated approach to security in anthology of essays
India is no bull in a china shop. It is not an aggressive state but is committed to safeguarding its territorial integrity. Alert to the changing threat landscape in the subcontinent, experts say the country’s approach to national security under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has seen pre-emptive, proactive and graded responses.
Only the third country after the United States and Israel to carry out cross-border strikes, such as the 2016 Uri surgical strikes and 2019 Balakot air attack, India has shown resolve, read political will, in its response and it has been effective. “Compare this to our delayed response to the Mumbai terror attacks in 2008. Under Modi, there is an element of self-control. His ‘think thoroughly through’ approach is aimed at long-term strategic planning. Ad hocism has been done away with. Since 2018, the emphasis is on creating an integrated national security system,” says Uttam Kumar Sinha, a leading scholar at the Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. He is one of the editors of ‘Modi 2.0 — A Resolve to Secure India’, a volume of essays by experts on national security released in New Delhi recently.
The book, which brings out the important aspects of national security under the ‘Modi 2.0’ government, comprises 17 chapters by experts from fields of diplomacy, military, academics, politics to media. “When we were dealing with the Covid pandemic within and our armed forces were safeguarding our borders, particularly with China, we realised how critical security is for the nation’s prosperity. People’s confidence in Modi on national security is high and his emphasis has been on an integrated approach and honour,” says Sinha, when asked on the significance and timing of the book.
The book, released by BJP national general secretary KL Santhosh, includes an essay by Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee Research Foundation’s honorary director Anirban Ganguly on ‘Modi’s Quest and Action for Securing India’; Union minister Sarbananda Sonowal’s writeup on ‘Strategies to Countering Insurgency in Assam’; the PM’s economic council chairman Bibek Debroy’s ‘Need for Police Reforms’; former NDRF chief Ranjit K Pachnanda’s writeup on ‘India’s Disaster Preparedness’; former diplomat Sujan R Chinoy’s ‘The Return of India’s Stolen Heritage’; former navy chief RK Dhowan’s ‘Securing India’s Maritime Interests and Harnessing Blue Economy’; former high commissioner TCA Raghavan’s ‘Reflections on India’s Policy towards Pakistan’; and National Commission for Women former chief Lalitha Kumaramanagalam’s ‘Women in the Time of Modi’.
Former army chief and Union minister VK Singh has shared his viewpoint in the book, too.
The writers speak of how the era under Modi has transformed India into a secure nation whether it’s countering terrorism in Kashmir, building infrastructure along the China border, initiating multi-pronged measures to counter insurgency in the North-East or resorting to community policing in Naxal-infested areas or empowering border forces to bring down narco-terrorism. Safeguarding infrastructure development, including expressways, bridges and metro lines, when our subcontinent is vulnerable to hydro-meteorological challenges is also highlighted.
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