March 24, 2009 9:20:28 pm
Noting that Rajasthan,being a border state,is vulnerable to terror attacks,Union Home Minister P Chidambaram on Tuesday asked the state government to remain on high alert against infiltration of terrorists from across the border.
“Being a border state and having a history of terror incidents,Rajasthan is a vulnerable state. It needs to be on a high alert against infiltration from across the border,” Chidambaram told reporters here after holding talks with Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on internal security issues.
“… the enemy is sitting across the border…history of terror in Rajasthan includes incidents like Ajmer and Jaipur serial blasts…Hence there is a need for high alert and internal vigilance,he said.
When asked whether there is any specific threat against the border state,the Home Minister said,”there is no specific terror threat. The state is fully equipped to meet any exigency.”
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“Militant groups from across the border are always planning to intrude into India and create terror incidents,but we have been successful in identifying and neutralizing them in many cases,” the Home Minister said.
When asked about Pakistan’s attitude in the aftermath of Mumbai terror attack,the home minister said,”they (Pakistan) have started to accept (that the terrorists came from its soil),but have not fully come forward.”
On the coordination between central intelligence agencies and the state government,Chidambaram said,”since the setting up of Multi Agency Center (MAC),we are no longer relying on communication through letters…it is now on a real time sharing basis”.
“This means every piece of information is shared immediately. The intelligence sharing is better now and the up-gradation process will continue,” the Home Minister said.
The security review with the state administration is an outcome of the recent CMs meeting held in Delhi in which the Home Ministry decided to hold separate talks with states and discuss the matters of internal security.
During the security review,the Home Minister said,the Rajasthan government has assured him that security audit will be carried out at the various tourist destinations in the state and “if required central agencies like CISF will under take such task”.
The state government was asked to perform “urban policing” in cities like Jaipur,Jodhpur,Ajmer,Kota,and Udaipur besides strengthening the rural police net work,Chidambaram said.
“Rajasthan has done good work in internal security matters and considerably strengthened its police and intelligence net… it would lead to national security,” he observed.
On Chief Minister Gehlot’s submission to provide citizenship to a group of Pakistanis displaced between 1960 and 1970,the Home Minister said they were not intruders but old migrants.
“We will take up the matter liberally on the state government’s demand…Also we are looking into the reduction of fee structure for applying citizenship,” he said.
On Gehlot’s demand of shifting the immigration and custom formalities for the Thar Express passengers from Jodhpur to Munabao or Barmer,the Home Minister assured that it would also be looked into.
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