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Afzal Guru execution: Security focus must be pan-India

February 09, 2013 09:42 IST

B Raman assesses the likely threats to India from Afzal Guru's execution.

The intelligence agencies would have examined in depth the likely security implications of Afzal Guru's execution on Saturday morning for his involvement in the attack on Parliament on December 13,2001, and taken the necessary precautions not only in Jammu and Kashmir, but also in the rest of India.

They would have studied in detail the kind of security problems our agencies faced after the execution of Maqbool Bhatt of the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front in Tihar jail on February 11, 1984 for his involvement in terrorism.

The circumstances in 1984 were not as complicated as they are today. We had to then contend only with the dangers of retaliation by Kashmiri terrorist organisations.

In 1984, we were not faced with the dangers of possible retaliation by Pakistani jihadi organisations like the Lashkar-e-Tayiba, the Jaish-e-Mohammad, the Harkat-ul-Mujahideen. They were busy fighting Soviet troops in Afghanistan. The attention of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence was also in Afghanistan.

They were not in a position to mount instant retaliation. Their retaliation was delayed till 1989 after the Soviet troops withdrew from Afghanistan.

Today, all these groups -- particularly the Lashkar and Jaish which played a principal role in the attack on Parliament -- are well primed against India and are in a position to mount quick retaliatory attacks not only in Jammu and Kashmir, but also in the rest of India with the help of their accomplices like the Students Islamic Movement of India and the Indian Mujahideen.

The security focus has to be pan-India.

B Raman