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Seminar on "21st Century Terrorism-Challenges for India" organised at Hyderabad
"Terrorism is no more a simple act of violence, but information and cyber security are major challenges to be met with 21st Century Terrorism," said Shakti Sinha, Director, Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML), New Delhi.

Speaking at a seminar on "21st Century Terrorism-Challenges for India", organised by Social Cause and India Foundation in Hyderabad on Sunday, the national security expert said that terrorism is contextual and "it is our battle".

He said we have to realise that nobody will join us in this battle against terrorism and we have to work out our own strategies. He cautioned that the terror groups have been extensively using social media for radicalisation, recruitment, raising money, gathering intelligence and to create panic. He deplored that India is lagging behind in this area and we didn't have any security systems to handle it.

He cautioned that India was passing through a dangerous era as we hadn't followed cyber security systems. He said that the 21st century challenges are not as simple as of inter-state wars, where India always proves to be successful. The present violence is more situational and more criminal, he added.

Strongly disputing various definitions of terrorism, Sinha said that terrorism is not based on idealism, but a tactic to achieve political goals. He said that most of the terror groups in the world had originated from the West against communism, but now had turned to be unmanageable for themselves.

Cautioning that India was moving towards a much greater problem as China is strongly supporting Pakistan for keeping India unstable, Sinha said that no more we may expect a 'global war' to tackle this problem and we need to work regionally by cultivating strategic relations with our neighbours by sharing intelligence and resources. He recalled that how Bangladesh's Shaik Hassina regime helps us to clean insurgent movements in Assam.

He pointed out the need to 'name and shame' Pakistan for promoting terror activities in the region. Strongly dismissing Pakistan's intentions to tackle terror groups, he recalled that while NIA had seized over 4 million dollars from separatist groups within a day of raids, Pakistan could seize a mere 3 million dollars during a year of raids by spending over 15 million dollars.

India Foundation Director Maj Gen (Dr) Dhruv C Katoch deplored that India was failing to concentrate on conflict resolution measures though its forces who are capable of tackling terror groups in Jammu and Kashmir, insurgent groups in North East and Left Wing violence in various parts of the country.

He accused that certain political and administrative vested interests intended to continue present conflicts for their own interests. For example, he said that such a situation allows them to misuse millions of rupees unaccountably.

He also said that India was failing in developing counter narrative to retort such forces. Although, India had been a victim of terrorism since the 50s and had been making moves at the United Nations on the urgent need to fight unitedly, he said that the world had refused to acknowledge. It's only after a few violent attacks in Western cities that they have now started crying about terrorism, he added.

He pointed out that the United States and the West are selective while dealing with terrorism. They are more concerned with couple of deaths in their own cities than hundreds of deaths in Asian and African countries.

He said that Kashmir had been known for peaceful co-existence of people till the 1980s. But, only later, in a systematic way, radicalisation was started, which was not realised by us for a long time, he said. According to him, India can meet these challenges only by cultivating a spirit of nationalism and also making the Indian democracy work more effectively.

Former Advisor to J&K Governor Lt Gen Mohammad Azmed Zaki, speaking as a guest honour, said that Indian Army is the best one in the world and is capable of facing any challenge on all fronts. The training provided to army personnel is excellent one.

Stating that presently we are facing proxy war perpetrated by Pakistan, he assured that our troops will make our country proud at all times. Former DGP K Aravinda Rao presiding over the seminar, said that terrorism is having roots from non-negotiable religious doctrines. On the occasion, the book titled "Global Terrorism: Challenges and Policy options" was also released.

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