Need pan-India number for intelligence gathering: Kiran Bedi

Pune, May 13 (PTI): Former IPS officer and Puducherry Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi today pitched for a pan-India toll free number to gather intelligence on crime and security.
Speaking at a seminar on national security here, Bedi said she had set up such a number in Puducherry and it was working effectively.
“We should have a dedicated pan-India toll free number for criminal intelligence gathering to tackle the issue of internal security. We need to make everybody a stakeholder in order to augment internal as well as external security,” said the former IPS officer.
On the toll free number, she said confidentiality of those who call in must be maintained and it could even have a reward system for such people.
She said that radicalisation was one of the main challenges to internal security and that “we as a system” were falling short of tools to handle it.
“Outfits (extremist groups) establishing links with local political parties is becoming a law and order issue for the administration and police,” Bedi said.
Speaking on the occasion, former High Commissioner to Pakistan, TCA Raghavan, said national security could not be confined to a couple of cities.
“Our external environment and regional environment is evolving all the time and we should not leave national security to a few people, a small fraternity of foreign policy experts or strategic thinkers. It is something which every citizen has to be engaged in on a regular basis,” he said.
On the subject of ‘The Pakistan Afghanistan Factor’, Raghavan said India needed to develop a strong narrative on it as it was more of a tactical war than an actual one.
“All the ground operations, incursions etc are on a tactical level rather than strategic,” he said.
Lieutenant General (retd) Syed Ata Hasnain, former General officer Commanding of the 15 Corps based in Srinagar, said “no war is going to happen with China”.
“China, Pakistan’s collusive threat, if at all, is going to be (in the form) of hybrid or cyber war rather than a conventional one,” the retired general said.
While, Air Marshal (retd) Bhushan Gokhale spoke about aerospace, Vice Admiral (retd) Anup Singh explained how India could play a strategic role in the Indian Ocean Region.
They were participating in a seminar titled “National Security-Opportunities and Challenges” organised by the Centre for Advanced Strategic Studies, Pune and Shashwat group of hospitals.