R.R. Swain, director general of police, CID
THE REPUTATION precedes the man. Be it New Delhi, Srinagar or Islamabad, all tend to watch R.R. Swain closely, albeit for different reasons. New Delhi looks towards him for his astute understanding of Pakistan, as he has served at least a decade in intelligence. No wonder the Inter-Services Intelligence and the Pakistan army are wary of his presence in J&K. In Srinagar, he is the favourite of not only the law enforcement officers, but also the civil society. His reports have led to the dismissal of terrorist-friendly employees and he keeps an eye on terrorist sympathisers.
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As J&K awaits its first assembly elections after the abrogation of Article 370, Swain explains how its constitutional bodies were hijacked by Pakistan. “Through Hurriyat, Pakistan told people that elections are haram and, therefore, people and politicians should stay away. Simultaneously, through gun-wielding terrorists, it started influencing the outcome of the elections,’’ says Swain. He has intelligence to show how terrorist networks increased the level of violence in certain constituencies to intimidate voters, affecting election results. Parties and candidates who stayed away from terrorists were contacted for secret support.
Swain says Pakistan made use of non-political platforms like bar associations to subvert the legal system. “The connection between such associations and terrorist-separatist networks are well known and any serious inquiry would lead to hundreds of instances of circumstantial and direct evidence of Pakistan's influence,’’ he says. “The biggest achievement Pakistan has had against India was not in increasing the numbers of foot soldiers among the terrorist ranks and improving their fighting abilities, but its success in placing embedded assets in important institutional and societal setups.’’ As the new war against terror is being fought on the borders as well as in the minds of people, Swain believes that India will prevail with the support of its citizens.