MHA Year End Review-2008
Union Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India
Year End Review-2008, December 31, 2008
"Notable improvements in Law& Order situation in J&K and NE"
During 2008, the level of violence in Jammu & Kashmir continued to show a declining trend. The overall security situation in the North Eastern States also showed signs of improvement. The Naxal violence during the year remained at the same level as compared to last year in terms of number of incidents and casualties of security forces. The communal situation in the country remained largely under control. There were some major terrorist incidents in Rampur, Jaipur, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Delhi, Malegaon, Modasa and Mumbai. Both the houses of Parliament recently passed two major legislations- the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill,2008 and the National Investigating Agency Bill,2008. As a result of co-ordinated action by the Central and State intelligence and security Agencies, 11 ISI-backed espionage modules were neutralised during the year up to 1st December, 2008 and a large number of terrorist modules of Pak-based terrorist outfits were busted in different parts of the country by the State and Central agencies. Some of the important activities, initiatives and achievements of the Ministry of Home Affairs are mentioned below.
Jammu & Kashmir
During 2008 up to November, terrorist incidents in the State were down by 39%, killings of civilians by 41% and of security forces by 31% over the corresponding period of previous year. The level of infiltration across LoC/international border has also seen a decline. Cross-LoC trade on the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad axis and on the Poonch-Rawalakote axis commenced on October 21,2008.
Voters rejected the call of separatists and terrorists and came out in large numbers to vote in the Assembly elections held in November and December, 2008.
The Prime Minister inaugurated the Anantnag- Rajwansher Railway track on the Quazigund- Baramulla rail line on October 11, 2008 and the 450 MW Baglihar hydro-electric project on October 10, 2008.
In April 2008, Government approved a package involving an outlay of around Rs. 1618 crore to encourage and facilitate the return of Kashmiri migrants to the Valley. The Government also approved some relief measures for the victims of militancy including one-time compensation of Rs. 5 lakh to the next-of-kin of civilians killed in militancy- related incidents .
Overall security situation in the North Eastern States improved as is manifest in the reduction in causalities of civilians and increase in numbers of militants killed/arrested/surrendered. Causalities of civilians and security force personnel decreased to 506 up to December 15, 2008 as compared to 577 during the corresponding period in the previous year. 4139 militants were killed or surrendered/arrested during 2008 up to December 15, 2008 against 2975 in the previous year. However, the security situation in Nagaland, Manipur and Assam continued to cause concern.
In Assam, two Coys of 28 Bn of the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) have unilaterally declared ceasefire. In Manipur, a formal Tripartite Suspension of Operation arrangement has been made with the Kuki National Organization (KNO) and the United Peoples Front (UPF) and its constituents on August 22, 2008.
Following Bills have been passed in Parliament to strengthen the security:
(i) The National Investigation Agency Bill
(ii) The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Bill
(iii) The Criminal Procedure Code Amendment Bill
In 2008, till November 2008, the number of incidents of violence and police/civilian casualties were 1435 and 658 as compared to 1420 and 636 for the corresponding period of the year 2007. Chhattisgarh has been permitted to engage 3500 SPOs for payment of honoraria. Jharkhand also has been permitted to engage 3400 SPOs. Cost of engaging helicopters by the Governments of Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh and Jharkhand has been permitted. Under the Special Infrastructure Scheme in affected States, a budget of Rs. 500 crore has been provided in the eleventh plan period, with an allocation of Rs. 100 crore for 2008-09. Over Rs.60 crore has been released to 8 focus districts in Bihar (Gaya, Aurangabad), Chhattisgarh (Dantewada and Bijapur), Andhra Pradesh (Khammam), Orissa (Malkangiri and Raigarh) and Madhya Pradesh (Balaghat) under this scheme. Under the Scheme for Modernisation of State Police Forces (MPF) Out of an allocation of Rs. 501.53 crore for naxal affected States for 2008-09, over Rs.279 crore has been released to the States so far. Rs.64 Crore has been allocated to 32 naxal affected Districts in 2008-09 for fortification of Police Stations.
32 India Reserve Battalions have been sanctioned to the concerned States. 37 battalions of Central Para Military Forces (CPMFs) are currently deployed in the States for assisting the State police forces in anti-naxalite operations. In 33 focus districts, 69 developmental schemes of 20 Central Ministries are being implemented on priority basis.
MHA played an active role in helping the State Governments of Orissa and Karnataka to control the situation after the incidents of attack on minorities and their religious institutions in these States.
This Ministry mooted a package for grant of additional ex-gratia assistance to the victims of Bhagalpur riots of 1989-90 on the lines of package for anti-Sikh riot victims of 1984. The Guidelines on Communal Harmony were revised extensively and the revised Guidelines were circulated to all the State Governments/ Union Territories in June 2008.
Police Modernisation and Augmentation
Modernisation of Central Para Military Forces (CPMFs)
Out of total outlay of Rs. 4185 Crore, an amount of Rs. 2664 crore have been spent till date on modernisation of CPMFs and rest of the amount will be spent by 31.03.10. The CPMFs have been equipped with latest weapons, surveillance and communication equipment, vehicles, Body protection equipments etc so that they can carry out their job of guarding the borders and ensuring internal security more effectively.
The Government approved a three year plan (2005-08) for modernization of Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) at an estimated cost of Rs.444.43 Crores in April, 2005. CCS has extended the plans by a period of another three years (two years for SSB) and the Plans will come to an end on 31.3.2010.
Procurement of Interceptor Boats for Coastal Security
An order for procurement of 84 Nos of 5 Ton boats each costing Rs. 105 lakhs and 110 Nos of 12 Ton boats each costing Rs. 215.00 lakhs at a total cost of Rs. 324.70 Crore has been placed on M/S GSL and M/S GRSE and the contract has been signed between MHA and the Shipyards on 29.3.2008. Supply of boats will commence from 1.4.2009 onwards and are likely to be completed by 1.4.2011. These Boats will help the Marine Police Stations of various State Governments in patrolling the coastal areas more effectively which will further reduce incidents of infiltration and smuggling through the coastal route.
Strengthening of Air Wing of BSF
Procurement of one 100 seater Large Transport Aircraft and two 50 Seater Medium Transport Aircraft are under procurement through Ministry of Defence.
The Cabinet Committee on Security has also approved procurement of 8 Dhruv Helicopters from M/s HAL on 21.10.08 and the draft contract for procurement and O&M of these helicopters is under examination and the contracts will be finalised very soon. The procurement of these helicopters and aircrafts will help the CPMFs to carry out their operation of guarding the borders as well as ensuring internal security of the Country in a more effective manner. The helicopters will also be used for fighting the Naxalite elements as well as for casualty evacuation.
A Note for the CCS for courier service for transportation of personnel of CPMFs is under Inter-Ministerial consultation.
MODERNISATION OF POLICE FORCES (MPF) SCHEME
Scheme for Modernisation of State Police Forces is a non-Plan scheme.
A significant initiative of MHA towards capacity building of State Police Forces. To meet the challenges to Internal Security threat posed to the States by terrorism, naxalism and criminal activities.
Mega City Policing
Aim is to address special problems being faced by Police in large urban areas in crime investigation, traffic management, etc. Funds are provided to Mega cities to procure modern and innovative equipment. The equipments are Surveillance Camera System, CCTV, X-Ray Scanners, Vehicle Scanners, Vehicle number plate identification system, integrated GIS based automated vehicle tracking, etc. Rs.68 crore sanctioned in 2008-09
A new concept of Desert Policing introduced from 2005-06 within the MPF Scheme . The States of Gujarat and Rajasthan are covered under the system. Funds are provided to equip the State Police Force in investigation, Mobility and Communication for better policing in large and scattered desert areas. Rs.10.00 Crore sanctioned annually.
Strengthening of Special Branches
Well equipped intelligence set up in States play crucial role to ensure internal security and counter insurgency operations. To begin with, 5% of MPF allocation has been earmarked for strengthening of special branches and equipping them with modern security and communication gadgetry in 4 Naxalite affected States, namely, Bihar, Chhatisgarh, Jharkhand and Orissa.
States were requested to enhance the manpower in Special Branches from their own resources. All States were advised to earmark 5% of MPF allocation for strengthening the intelligence set up in their States. Rs.40.00 Crore sanctioned in 2008-09
Strengthening of Police in Naxal affected Districts
The MPF Scheme has a special component for strengthening the Police infrastructure in 76 severe Naxal affected Districts at the rate of Rs. 2.00 Crore per District per year. Naxal affected districts are provided 100% Central funds. On the advice of Naxalite Management Division, Rs.64.00 Crore has been allocated to 32 naxal affected Districts in 2008-09 for fortification of Police Stations.
Timely release of funds under MPF Scheme
A new system has been adopted for release of funds from 2008-09. High Powered Committee of MHA considered the Action Plan in Feb-March 2008. First installment of funds for 2008-09 released to State Governments in April 2008. An amount of Rs. 1163.83 Crore has been allotted under the MPF Scheme in the current year and an amount of Rs. 838.93 Crore has been released to the states so far. During last year an amount of Rs. 497 Crore only could be released during the same period. MPF Scheme provided much needed assistance and impetus to police modernization. Provided proper building for police station/out posts. Construction of houses for police personnel boosted their morale. Availability of vehicles improved police mobility and reduced response time. Modern weapons boosted police power & morale particularly in naxal affected areas.
Implementation of the Coastal Security Scheme
Under the Coastal Security Scheme for 9 coastal States and 4 Union Territories, 55 of planned 73 coastal police stations have been made operational - Gujarat (10), Andhra Pradesh (6), West Bengal (4), Goa (3), Kerala (1), Maharashtra (12), Karnataka (5), Tamil Nadu (8), Puduchery (1), Lakshadweep (4) and Daman & Diu (1).
Coast Guard is imparting training to the State Police personnel in maritime activities. More than 1000 personnel have been imparted training. Boats are being procured centrally for which M/s Goa Shipyards Limited, Goa and M/s Garden Reach Ship Builders and Engineers Limited, Kolkata have been nominated. Delivery of the boats is scheduled to commence from April, 2009.
Replacement of fencing constructed under Phase-I along Indo-Bangladesh border
In pursuance of the decision of the Government to replace the entire 861 Km of fencing constructed under Phase-I in West Bengal, Assam and Meghalaya, which got damaged due to adverse climatic conditions, repeated submergence etc., 364 Km of fencing has been replaced so far. The CCS has approved extension of time for this project upto 31st March, 2010.
Construction of roads of operational significance along Indo-China border
Construction of 5 roads in Arunachal Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh has been started during 2008 out of 27 link roads approved by the Government to improve infrastructure on this border.
Border Area Development Programme
During the year, out of Rs.631.21 crore earmarked for Border Area Development Programme (BADP), Rs.366.86 crore have been released to the State Governments. BADP,as a part of comprehensive approach to the Border Management, focuses on socio-economic development of the border areas and to promote sense of security amongst the people living there.
During 2008, new guidelines have been issued to the State Governments concerned emphasizing the need for participatory planning, convergence of all Centrally Sponsored Schemes with BADP funds, filling up critical gaps in infrastructure, providing livelihood opportunities. In the new guidelines, emphasis has been given on the need for organized work selection, effective monitoring and review of the programme. The emphasis is on specific socio-economic and infrastructure development of villages falling ‘between 0 to 15 km’ from the border. All the major developmental infrastructure facilities like pucca road connectivity, electricity, safe drinking water, telephone facilities, primary school building, PDS shop, and community center are being developed in a planned way. The village plan is to be integrated with district plan for the proper and sustainable development of the remote villages.
Construction of Integrated Check Posts
The Government has decided to establish 13 Integrated Check Posts in two phases (6 ICPs in Phase-I and 7 ICPs in Phase-II) at entry and exit points on the international land borders of the country through a Plan scheme. Each ICP will have dedicated passenger and cargo terminals providing adequate customs & immigration counters, x-rays scanners, passenger amenities and other related facilities like service stations, fuel stations, etc. in a single modern complex equipped with state-of-the-art amenities. 6 ICPs viz. (i) Attari/Wagah (Punjab) on India-Pakistan border; (ii) Raxaul (Bihar) on the India-Nepal border; (iii) Moreh (Manipur) on the India-Myanmar border and (iv) Petrapole (West Bengal) on the India-Bangladesh border Dawki (Meghalaya) and Akhaura (Tripura) are proposed to be set up in Phase-I.
An outlay of Rs. 635 crore has been approved for the construction of ICPs through a new Plan Scheme in the 11th Five Year Plan.
An institutional framework viz., the Land Ports Authority of India (LPAI), proposed to be established, will be charged with the responsibility to undertake the construction, management and maintenance of ICPs. The Land Ports Authority of India Bill, 2008 has been introduced in the Lok Sabha. The Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) of all the 13 ICPs have already been prepared and the preparation of Detailed Engineering Reports(DERs) has already commenced. DER in respect of Raxaul ICP has been completed.
Strengthening the Monitoring Mechanism
The Ministry of Home Affairs had constituted Inter Ministerial Committee on implementation of Schemes of CRF/NCCF. The Committee after considering the views from various States/UTs and detailed discussions among the Members and representatives of some State Governments formulated and finalized the format/guidelines relating to (i) monitoring of relief expenditure (ii) preparation of Annual Report on management of natural calamities by the States/UTs (iii) preparation of Memoranda by the affected States/UTs seeking additional financial assistance in the wake of a calamity of a severe natural and (iv) preparation of report by the Central Team deputed to the affected States/UTs for assessment of the situation caused by natural calamities and requirement of funds. These guidelines/formats have been circulated to all the States.
In order to have improvement in the existing mechanism of monitoring the relief expenditure a web-based computerized tracking system has also been developed.
Financial Assistance to States
To ensure ready availability of funds with the States to undertake rescue and relief operations in the wake of natural calamities, a Calamity Relief Fund (CRF) account has been constituted in each State with a cumulative total allocation of Rs. 21,333.33 crore for the period from 2005-2010. For the year 2008-09, the allocation is Rs. 4427.99 crore out of which 75% amounting to Rs. 3320.97 crore is share of GOI. During the year 2008-09, an amount of Rs. 1659.735 crore has been released. The 2nd installment of Central share of CRF for the year 2008-09, amounting to Rs. 602.615 crore has been released, in advance, to 06 States (viz. Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Orissa). Beside this financial assistance of Rs. 1800.00 crore has also been provided to various States from National Calamity Contingency Fund (NCCF) during 2008-09, so far.
National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) Rules
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has been constituted during 2006 by up-gradation/conversion of 8 (eight) standard battalions of Central Para Military Forces as a specialist force to respond to Disaster or disaster like situations. The NDRF Rules framed by the Ministry of Home Affairs in consultation with the concerned Ministries have been notified.
i. Signing of Agreement between India and Egypt on Mutual Legal Assistance on Criminal Matters. (08.01.2008)
ii. Signing of Treaty between India and Australia on Mutual Legal Assistance on Criminal Matters. (23.06.2008)
iii. Signing of Agreement between India and Iran on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters. ( 02.11.2008)
Treaties coming into force
i. MoU between India and Saudi Arabia on combating crime has come into force. (14.08.2008)
ii. Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty between India and Bulgaria has come into force. (09.10.2008)
iii. Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty between India and Vietnam has come into force. (17.11.2008)
Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties (Multilateral)
Signing of SAARC Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters. (03.08.2008)
The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Convention on cooperation in Combating International Terrorism, Transnational Organized Crime and Illicit Drug Trafficking was discussed and finalized in the 4th BIMSTEC Joint Working Group meeting held on 22-23 October 2008. The main objective of the proposed Convention is to enhance cooperation among the law enforcement agencies in combating International Terrorism, Transnational Organized Crime and Illicit Trafficking in narcotic drugs and Psychotropic substances including their precursor chemicals etc. Further the Member States also undertake to provide each other the widest possible measures of mutual assistance in prevention, investigation, prosecution and suppression of such crimes.
The Home Secretary Level Talks with Pakistan was held in Islamabad in November. The Government of India has sanctioned creation of 7612 additional posts in Delhi Police for security arrangement for Commonwealth Games 2010 and strengthening of Delhi Police. Creation of 11 new Police Stations and two Districts of Delhi Police has also been sanctioned. 130 vehicles have also been sanctioned to increase the PCR bases in Delhi.
The National Institute of Disaster Management conducted 51 training programmes on different aspects of disaster management from April 1, 2008 to December 15, 2008. 21 out of these 51 programmes have been conducted in State Capitals in collaboration with the Administrative Training Institutes (ATIs). About 1600 participants have attended these programmes.
Considering the demand of various States for granting further financial assistance for construction of new jails/ additional barracks so as to address the problem of overcrowding, the Ministry of Home Affairs has initiated the process of formulating second phase of the scheme of modernization of prisons.
An MoU between the Government of India and Myanmar on intelligence Exchange Cooperation was signed on 2nd April, 2008. The MoU would help both India and Myanmar to exchange real time and actionable intelligence. Home Secretary level talks between India and Bangladesh were held in August 2008 in Dhaka.
A Pilot Project was under implementation since November, 2003 in selected areas of the country to test check feasibility of the processes and the methodology laid-down under the rules. The implementation of the pilot project on MNIC has been completed on March 31, 2008 and more than 12 lakhs cards have been issued to the citizens in the pilot areas. A unique National Identity Number (NIN) has been given to citizens below 18 years of age in all the pilot areas.
Government has decided on creation of NPR by collecting information on specified items of each resident, along with the population enumeration at the time of next decennial census in 2011. The NPR schedules will be canvassed along with the Census schedules. They will be digitised to create a computerised database and to add photographs and finger biometrics of each individual in the follow up operations to be undertaken by UID Authorities, being setup under the aegis of the Planning Commission. The NPR so made could be used to create National Register of Indian Citizens (NRIC) as a subset of NPR.
A revised procedure for grant of visas to foreign research scholars, visiting faculty and foreign participants coming to India for international conferences, seminars, workshops etc. has been put in place. Under this revised procedure, powers to issue visas in the above mentioned cases have been delegated to the Indian Missions abroad except in some cases.
Advance Passenger Information System (APIS) has been introduced in phase-I, at six international airports namely Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Cochin w.e.f. 1.4.2008. Under APIS all airlines flying into India, at the six designated Airports, are required to provide passenger particulars electronically in the prescribed format, within 15 minutes of their take off from the port outside India, to the immigration authorities.
The Govt. has approved raising of 10 Commando Battalions for Resolute Action (CoBRA), well trained in guerilla tactics and jungle warfare to tackle naxal threat and militancy. To provide specialized training for the CoBRA personnel and Commandos of State Goverments, the Government has approved up-gradation of existing 04 training centers
Govt. has further decided to provide additional assistance of Rs.264 crore @ Rs.3 crore per Coy for two Coys to be raised as a Commando Coy in each of the 44 India Reserve Battalions. In order to provide additional support to the States, the ceiling on re-imbursement of infrastructure cost has been enhanced from existing Rs.8 crore to Rs.15 crore.
The Govt has sanctioned 4190 posts during 2008 (upto 15.12.2008) for induction/augmentation of CISF at 25 PUSs/other installations.
With a view to capacity building of the State Police personnel in jungle warfare and counter insurgency operations, special Counter Insurgency & Anti-Terrorism (CIAT) training centres will be set up in Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Orissa (4 Centres in each State) with an outlay of Rs.52 crore during the 11th Five Year Plan. An allocation of Rs.150 crore has been approved for the BPR&D for 04 schemes for strengthening of BPR&D during the 11th Five Year Plan. These include setting up of Central Academy for Police Training at Bhopal for providing training to the Police Trainers across the country and to the direct recruit Dy. SPs and in-service and specialized training to Dy. SP/Addl. SP of these States.
Several ‘Training Interventions’ have been approved to develop motivational skills, communication skills, skills for managing stress, assessing strength areas and development of core expertise of Police personnel. An outlay of Rs.10 crore have been specifically made to have R&D projects for good governance, correctional administration in prisons, police reforms etc.
The Govt. has given ‘in principle’ approval to a scheme of allowances for CPMFs officers of the rank of Commandant and below and other ranks in Bns deployed in difficult areas/counter insurgency/high altitude areas.
Following the recommendations of the 6th CPC, Govt. has approved grant of ration money allowance at par with Army. Besides a new family accommodation allowance has also been introduced.
Funding towards capital infrastructure of the CPFs, has been enhanced substantially and an amount of Rs.1160.18 crore has been provided in the financial year 2008-09 for creation of building infrastructure at Force formations including Border Out Posts and Residential accommodation to force personnel.
Source: Press Information Bureau, Government of India.