India due to its large geographical expanse (shares land and maritime boundary with multiple countries), critical location (between Golden crescent and triangle), multi-ethnic society (insurgency) and exclusive growth trajectory (extremism) poses following internal security threats for India.
- Terrorism, Extremism, and Neo-Terrorism: These threats are prominent in regions like Jammu and Kashmir (also with emergence of hybrid terrorism), the resurgence of the Khalistan movement (separatist movement) and left-wing extremism affecting central and peninsular part of India.
- Insurgency and Illegal Migration: Separatist movements, sub-national aspirations, and demands for autonomy contribute to insurgency, especially in the Northeastern states, where porous borders also facilitate illegal migration.
- Organized Crime: Criminal networks exploit law and order gaps, engaging in activities like drug trade, human trafficking, and money laundering, often with links to terrorism, complicating security efforts.
- Social Media: Radicalization through social media and the misuse of digital platforms for political gains can impact law and order and overall security.
- Maritime Security: India’s extensive coastline and strategic location expose it to maritime security threats, including piracy and smuggling.
- Cybercrime and Multiverse: The rise of cybercrime poses a significant security challenge, as the digital realm becomes a new frontier for warfare and disruption.
To respond to the various security threats, India has established and employs a range of intelligence and security forces:
- IB (Intelligence Bureau) and R&AW (Research and Analysis Wing): These agencies gather intelligence within India and conduct counterintelligence and counter-terrorism operations.
- National Investigating Agency (NIA) Act: NIA conducts thorough investigations and operates NIA courts for speedy trials of terrorism-related cases.
- NATGRID (National Intelligence Grid): NATGRID collects ground-level information and collates it in an easily accessible manner for relevant agencies.
- Coastal and Maritime Security: The National Committee for Strengthening Maritime and Coastal Security (NCSMCS), led by the Cabinet Secretary, ensures robust coastal and maritime security measures.
- Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI): CBI handles complex economic and conventional crimes, often collaborating internationally to combat transnational crime.
- National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO): NTRO is a technical intelligence agency under the National Security Advisor in the Prime Minister’s Office, specializing in technical surveillance and intelligence.
- National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Centre (NCIIPC): NCIIPC is a 24×7 mechanism focused on safeguarding critical information infrastructure from cyber threats.
- Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In): CERT-In coordinates crisis management efforts and acts as a nodal agency for addressing cyber threats effectively.
These agencies collectively contribute to India’s efforts to address and mitigate a wide range of internal and external security challenges.