Karnataka, which was relatively peaceful and free from activities of terrorist and insurgent groups such as Maoists and Pak-based Jihadi groups all these years, has witnessed a couple of incidents in which militants had thrown challenges to the police. After the 2005 attack on the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), one of the country's premier centre of excellence in higher education, the state police had shrugged off its conservative approach to such acts and had been taking new initiatives to tackle the situation. The city police were still clue-less on the perpetrators of the attack on IISc in which Delhi-based Scientist M C Puri was killed and another four sustained serious injuries.
Bangalore, hailed as the knowledge capital of the country, was once again rocked when seven Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were exploded in different localities in the city within a gap of one hour on July 25 last. The low intensive IED blasts have claimed the life of one woman and injured seven others.
In view of the increased terrorist activities across the country, the state government realised the need to strengthen its intelligence network and has approved a proposal from the state police to have a separate cadre for the intelligence department for which rules and guidelines were put in place. For the first time in the state, the state police were all set to raise separate and independent intelligence network akin to the Intelligence Bureau (IB).
Additional Director-General of Police, Corps of Detective (COD), D V Guruprasad told UNI that the state government had approved a proposal to set up a separate cadre of committed personnel who would get into the department through recruitment and would remain there till they attained superannuation.
At present, personnel to the state intelligence department were drawn from different wings of the police on deputation and return to their parent departments after a stint of few months or years.
He said in the first phase, as many as 25 posts of Sub-Inspectors would be created in the intelligence department and recruitments made. The process had already begun, Mr Guruprasad said and added that ''only a few states in the country are having separate intelligence cadre on the line of the IB and Karnataka will join the band of such states shortly''.
He said the decision to set up a separate cadre for intelligence wing was taken in response to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's recent call to all states for improving intelligence gathering mechanism to meet the growing challenges of terrorist and insurgent outfits.
Elaborating on the recruitment process and subsequent training for the intelligence personnel, Mr Guruprasad said the recruits would undergo rigorous training both under the central intelligence and military intelligence wings. They would also be sent for strenous commando training.
Presently, the state police have separate cadre for wireless, fingerprint and forensic laboratory. With the decision of the new government, ''Karnataka will be one of the few states to have a separate cadre for intelligence while even Gujarat does not have such set up so far,'' Mr Guruprasad said. Mr Guruprasad, who also looks after the recruitment and training of the state police, said as many as 13,000 police personnel including 1,300 women and 872 Sub-Inspectors had been appointed during the last two years. ''At present Karnataka is the only state having the highest per capita police personnel in the entire country.'' He said among the 13,000 new recruits 5,700 were undergoing training in various police training schools and institutions across the state.
Replying to questions, Mr Prasad said the state police had incorporated new syllabus for training the new recruits and they would be taught to tackle of economic offences, cyber crimes terrorism and naxalism. ''We are also sending our officers and constables to Greyhound Training Institute, a dedicated training centre to fight Maoists groups, in Hyderabad,'' he said.