Is R&AW dreaded or dreadful, effective or affectlessly irrelevant, a proactive shaper of India’s history and foreign policy or a bumbling reactionary force? As R&AW turns 50 today, it is worth investigating its past in search of an answer. Like everything else about it, R&AW’s origin is shrouded in mystery.
The Research and Analysis Wing, India’s external intelligence agency, started to organise the annual RN Kao Memorial Lecture to commemorate the legacy of its founder RN Kao.
In simple language, there was complete intelligence blackout. None of the intelligence agencies had made any effort to penetrate the modules and cells which normally function from within the clustered Muslim areas in and around Pune and nearby towns.
Such continuous failure to generate Human Intelligence and absence of sophisticated Electronic Intelligence is unpardonable.
Vice President Hamid Ansari has pushed for a parliamentary oversight committee to monitor the activities of the intelligence agencies, something which previous Canary Trap posts have strongly advocated for.
While delivering the late R N Kao memorial lecture on January 19, Vice President Ansari highlighted the case of “faulty intelligence” on weapons of mass destruction before the Iraqi invasion in 2003 and asked “How shall a democracy insure its secret intelligence apparatus becomes neither a vehicle for conspiracy nor a suppressor of the traditional liberties of democratic self-government?”