ISI trying to revive militancy in Punjab, says Shinde

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New Delhi, June 5: Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde today said that Pakistan's ISI was trying to revive militancy in Punjab, thus raising concerns in the border state.

Speaking at the chief ministers conference on internal security, the home minister said that Sikh youths are being trained at ISI facilities in Pakistan. In contrast, the home minister acknowledged that there was improvement in situation in Jammu and Kashmir. He also mentioned government's engagement in having talks with many insurgent groups.

The meeting, convened by the Home Ministry and inaugurated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, will deliberate extensively on Much-touted National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), the activities of jihadi groups, cross border infiltration, communal disturbances and ways of improving intelligence gathering mechanisms.

"Sikh youths are being trained in ISI facilities in Pakistan," he said, adding that the interrogation of suspects has revealed the use of "jailed cadres and unemployed youth to unleash terror attacks".

Shinde said Sikh youth based and settled in Europe and the US were also being motivated towards militancy and a large quantity of arms, ammunition and explosives, including RDX have managed to find its way into Punjab through the borders. He said a significant quantity of RDX has since been recovered in police action in Rajasthan and Punjab in the last one year.

Shinde stressed on the state of internal security in the country while mentioning Chhattisgarh Maoist attack. He assured the state governments of help from the centre to tackle terrorism.

Later, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh also asked for Centre and states cooperation to curb the violence by Left extremists.

Curiously, the prime minister also mentioned women's security issue at the internal security meeting called to discuss terrorism.

"We must ensure setting up of institutional mechanism for safety of women and children especially in urban areas," he said.

The prime minister said the government is willing to talk to all extremist groups within the ambit of Constitution.

Some issues raised by Manmohan Singh are:

* All party meeting on June 10 to discuss Naxal issue.

* Need to put in place institutional mechanisms such as sensitisation of policemen.

* Govt is willing to talk to all extremist groups within the ambit of Constitution.

* Need to recognise the special needs of the minority groups in the country specifically SC/STs

* The security situation in the Northeast remains a concern.

OneIndia News

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