‘Pressure at right places’: Ajit Doval explains strategy to counter terror from Pak

The National Investigation Agency probe into funding of terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir has put the pressure at the right places on foreign agencies that are sponsoring terror in the valley, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval said at a conference to top police officers on Monday.

Doval, who stressed on a comprehensive approach to counter terrorism, laid special emphasis on curbing terror funding but stressed that this would only be possible due to meticulous investigation. The NSA referred to the NIA crackdown against terror funding in Kashmir and the global anti-terror financing group – Financial Action Task Force (FATF) – action against Pakistan as two examples during his speech at Monday’s conference.

“NIA has been able to make tremendous contribution in its terror funding probe in Jammu and Kashmir. This action put the pressure at the right place in foreign agencies which were running this”.

Pointing to the FATF which has put the spotlight on terror financing in Pakistan, NSA Doval said “This has been done through collecting proper evidence and information”.

“The FATF action has put a lot of pressure on Pakistan,” said Doval, who described anti-terrorist squads in various states as “soldiers against terrorism”.

“You (officers present in this room) are not just investigators but soldiers against terrorism. Your task is not confined to just probe. You are the total combatants in fight against terrorism. Only intelligence agencies won’t do it alone. Investigators’ aim is much beyond their FIR or chargesheet,” he said.

Referring to Pakistan focus on backing terror, NSA Ajit Doval reasoned that : “Nobody can afford the war today, because it is cost ineffective. So, instrument of covert action – terrorism – is a low cost sustainable option which bleeds the enemy.”

But state-sponsored terrorism, he explained, is much more than giving finances and arms to the terrorists. “In our case, Pakistan has mastered the art of supporting terror,” he said.

Outlining the strategy that anti-terror teams must adopt, the NSA said: “We fight terrorism by taking away their weapons, cutting their financing and degrading their capabilities.”

“Come out with specific guidelines what you need, how you bring greater convergence in fight against terrorism” he told officers at the event. Doval also told them to stop working in silos, adding that he would have ideally liked a single anti-terror body but since this hadn’t been possible, ATS officers had to play a lead role in the states.

“Perception management is important. We must tell media what action we are taking. If we don’t, they speculate,” says NSA Ajit Doval.

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