India, US, Internet surveillance, N-deal, and secret strategic pacts?

Two separate developments in the Indian political scene in last few days have given rise to a lot of uncomfortable questions (regarding illegal surveillance/phone tapping and the Indian government’s eagerness to please the US administration) that must be asked.

The first development being the revelation of the contents of a Cabinet Committee on Security note which reportedly exposes UPA government’s attempts to dilute the Nuclear Liability Bill to suit the interests of the US administration.

And the second one is the alleged smear campaign against former Army Chief General VK Singh over a secretive surveillance unit during his tenure.

Here are some uncomfortable questions that are doing the rounds in the strategic/security circles of this country.

  • Is the Centre for Artificial Intelligence in Bangalore the hub of illegal surveillance activities of the Government of India?
  • Are some of the best young Indian minds on Artificial Intelligence being illegally trapped and used for phone and internet interception and surveillance activities?
  • Is monitoring of phone and Internet data being sold to corporate houses illegally to give select business houses competitive advantage?
  • Is India’s Central Monitoring System (CMS) closely tied to the US National Security Agency’s activities?
  • Is this close partnership on Internet surveillance and phone tapping part of a larger secret strategic affairs collaboration between India and the US?
  • Are UPA government’s keen and persistent efforts to dilute nuclear liability provisions part of a strategic quid pro quo?
  • Is greater Civil-Nuclear cooperation and red carpet for US nuclear power contractors part of the deal that ensures India’s safety from Pakistani nukes in the event of a Taliban takeover of Islamabad after US withdrawal from Afghanistan?
  • Has the US promised pre-emptive strikes at Pakistan’s nuclear facilities in case the latter descends into chaos post 2014 US withdrawal from Af-Pak region?
  • Have India and the US agreed on a secret military pact?
  • Are whispers about India allowing the US Air Force (USAF) use of forward landing air strips and bases in Ladakh part of this secret pact?
  • Is there more to the landing of Hercules C-130J at Daulat Beg Oldi than just showcasing force projection and newly acquired heavy lift ability of the Indian Air Force?

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