VIF News Digest: National Security, Defence Studies & Terrorism, 1-15 May, 2019
  • Launch of Fourth Scorpene Class Submarine – VELA;
  • INS Kolkata and Shakti undertake Group Sail with Naval Ships of Japan, Philippines and the USA ;
  • Georgian an-12 aircraft forced to land at Jaipur by IAF interceptors;
  • First Apache Helicopter formally handed over to The IAF;
  • DRDO Successfully Conducts Flight Test of ABHYAS;
  • Jaisalmer gets ready to Host International Army Scout Masters Competition 2019.
  • Nigeria - Boko Haram killed 14 loggers in Borno;
  • - Islamic State affiliated group killed 11 soldiers in Gajiganna.

  • Yemen - Bomb blast killed six people in Hadhramaut Governorate.
  • Three BLA terrorists attacked luxury hotel in Balochistan;
  • Blast at Sufi Shrine killed four people in Lahore.
Jammu and Kashmir:
  • 13 people under surveillance over terror finance and aid to separatists;
  • JeM terrorist surrenders and joins mainstream;
  • Grenade attack on polling station in Pulwama;
  • Politician killed by terrorists in Anantnag;
  • Three HM terrorists killed in CT operation in Shopian;
  • Security Forces arrest two LeT terrorists in Ramban;
  • Three JeM terrorists killed in CT operation in Pulwama;
  • Delhi Police arrests JeM terrorist in Srinagar;
  • Security Forces kill IS-JK terrorist in Shopian.
Left-Wing Extremism:
  • Six Maoists surrender in Andhra Pradesh;
  • 15 Security Forces personnel martyred in IED blast in Maharashtra;
  • Maoist affected region in Jharkhand witnessed high voting;
  • 30 surrendered women Maoists joined commando team in Chhattisgarh.
Islamist Extremism in India (including Islamic State):
  • NIA arrested a youth in ‘IS Kasaragod case’ from Kerala;
  • Islamic State announced its province in India;
  • NIA arrested an IS sympathiser from Kerala.
Khalistan-Inspired Extremism: Two BKI terrorists arrested from Punjab and Delhi.

  • J&K Governor’s Twitter handle hacked by unknown elements;
  • NITI Aayog proposed INR 7,500 crore plan for AI.
Launch of fourth Scorpene Class Submarine - VELA

Vela, the fourth Scorpene class submarine constructed by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited, was launched on 06 May 2019, by Mrs Veena Ajay Kumar, wife of Dr Ajay Kumar, Secretary Defence Production, who was the Chief Guest on the occasion. Vice Adm AK Saxena, CWP&A, was also present during the launching ceremony. This reaffirms the steps taken by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd (MDL) in the ongoing ‘Make in India’ programme, which is being actively implemented by the Department of Defence Production, Ministry of Defence. The submarine will undergo rigorous trials and tests, both in harbour and at sea before delivery to the Indian Navy.

The contract for the construction and Transfer-of-Technology for six Scorpene class submarines in series, has M/s Naval Group (formerly DCNS) of France as ‘Collaborator’ and are being built by MDL. Click here to read....

INS Kolkata and Shakti undertake Group Sail with ships of Japan, Philippines and USA

The six-day long Group Sail of Naval ships from the United States of America in the South China Sea from 03 May to 09 May 19 had participation of six combatants from the four participating countries. These included the Guided Missile Destroyer INS Kolkata and Fleet Support Ship INS Shakti of India; Helicopter Carrier JMSDF Izumo and Guided Missile Destroyer JMSDF Murasame of Japan; Frigate BRP Andres Bonifacio of Philippines; and Arleigh Burke Class Destroyer USS Williams P Lawrence of USA. The Group Sail was aimed to deepen the existing partnership and foster mutual understanding among participating navies. Click here to read....

Georgian AN-12 aircraft forced to land at Jaipur by IAF interceptors

An unknown aircraft entered Indian air space in North Gujarat Sector at 1515 hours with its IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe) ‘on’. The aircraft did not follow the authorized Air Traffic Services (ATS) route and was not responding to Radio calls from Indian controlling agencies. Since ATS routes in the area were closed due to the current geo-political situation, and the aircraft entered Indian air space from an unscheduled point, the Air Defence interceptors on operational readiness were scrambled and vectored towards the unknown aircraft for investigation.

On visual contact, the aircraft was identified as Georgian AN-12 flying at twenty seven thousand feet. The aircraft neither responded on international distress frequency nor to visual signals during interception. However, when challenged, the aircraft informed that it was a non-scheduled aircraft that had got airborne from Tbilisi (Georgia) for Delhi via Karachi. The aircraft was shadowed and forced to land at Jaipur for necessary investigation. Click here to read....

First Apache Helicopter formally handed over to the IAF

First AH-64E (I) Apache Guardian helicopter was formally handed over to the Indian Air Force at Boeing production facility in Mesa, Arizona, USA on 10 May 19. Air Marshal AS Butola, accepted the Apache at a ceremony in the presence of representatives from US Government. IAF had signed a contract with US Government and M/s Boeing Ltd in Sep 2015 for 22 Apache helicopters. The first batch of helicopters is scheduled to be shipped to India by July this year. Click here to read....

DRDO successfully conducts flight test of ABHYAS

Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) conducted successful flight test of ABHYAS - High-speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT) - from Interim Test Range, Chandipur in Odisha. Tracked by radars and electro-optic systems it proved its performance in fully autonomous way point navigation mode. The configuration of ABHYAS is designed on an in-line small gas turbine engine and uses indigenously developed MEMS based navigation system for its navigation and guidance. The performance of the system was as per simulations carried out and demonstrated the capability of ABHYAS to meet the mission requirement for a cost effective HEAT. Click here to read....

Jaisalmer gets ready to host International Army Scout Masters Competition, 2019

International Army Scout Masters Competition, as a part of International Army Games, will be organised under the aegis of Konark Corps at Jaisalmer from 24 July to 17 August 2019. The event will witness participation of the Mechanised Infantry Scout Teams of eight countries including Russia who is the founding member of this format of International Army Games.

Russian delegation and senior military and diplomatic dignitaries from participating countries visited Jaisalmer Military Station on 14 and 15 May 2019. The delegates were shown and briefed on the special training facilities created at Jaisalmer and Pokhran. The head of the Russian delegation Lieutenant General Budyshkin Albert Alienvich expressed confidence that India will provide the right opportunity for all teams to excel and bring long term tangible benefits to International Military Cooperation. Click here to read....

Boko Haram killed 14 loggers in Borno

On 29 April, Boko Haram terrorists killed 14 loggers as they were collecting firewood in North-East region in Nigeria. The bodies of the loggers were recovered on 30 April, at Duwabayi village near garrison town of Monguno in Borno State. Boko Haram terrorists repeatedly target farmers, loggers, and herders accusing them of being informers for Nigerian Army and pro-government militia engaged in fight against Boko Haram. Click here to read....

IS affiliated group killed 11 soldiers in Gajiganna

On 10 May, a splinter group of Boko Haram affiliated to Islamic State (IS) — Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) - carried out an attack on the North-Eastern town of Gajiganna, killing 11 Nigerian soldiers. The terrorists fled when the Army called for Air Force support and reinforcement units from neighbouring town. In 2016, ISWAP had split from the Boko Haram. Click here to read....

Bomb blast killed six people in Hadhramaut Governorate

On 03 May, a roadside bomb blast, believed to be planted by al-Qa’ida’s Yemen branch - Al-Qa’ida in Arab Peninsula (AQAP) - killed six people including children, and injured six others in Al-Qatn village in the Hadhramaut Governorate. The AQAP operates in several provinces in the Southern and Eastern Yemen, including Abyan, Shabwa, and Al-Bayda. Click here to read....

Three BLA terrorists attacked luxury hotel in Balochistan

On 11 May, three terrorists of Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) attacked a luxury hotel - Zaver Pearl-Continental Hotel in the Port of Gwadar - and killed four hotel employees. According to Pakistan Army’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), all three terrorists were neutralised and a soldier of Pakistan Navy was also killed during the operation. Click here to read....

Blast at Sufi shrine killed four people in Lahore

On 08 May, an explosion in one of the oldest Sufi Shrine Pakistan’s — Data Darbar Shrine - killed 10 people and injured 20 others in Lahore. According to the Deputy Inspector-General of Police of operations in Lahore, Ashfaq Khan, the explosion took place at a police checkpoint with police personnel being the primary target. Earlier in 2010, the same shrine was attacked by suicide bombers in which more than 40 people were killed. Click here to read....

Jammu and Kashmir
13 people listed over terror finance and aid to separatists

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has listed 13 people for their involvements in terror financing and for assisting separatists in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). Among the 13 accused, Zahoor Ahmad Shah Watali is lodged in Delhi’s Tihar Jail. He was involved in funnelling terror funds into India. It is evident that Watali had been receiving money directly from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), the Pakistan High Commission, LeT (Lashkar-e-Taiba) chief Hafiz Saeed, and Head of HM (Hizb-ul-Mujahideen) Syed Salahuddin, said a senior officer at Enforcement Directorate on the basis of anonymity. Click here to read....

JeM terrorist surrendered and joined mainstream

A Kashmiri youth (identity not disclosed) who was the member of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) surrendered and joined the mainstream. Recently, top officials of State police, CRPF (Central Reserve Police Force) and the Indian Army had urged Kashmiri youths to give up violence and join the mainstream.

There has been considerable drop in the recruitment of Kashmiri youth into militancy, and the trend continues. This is a ‘healthy’ sign for the Valley, said the General Officer Commanding (GOC) of Indian Army’s 15 Corps, Lt Gen K J S Dhillon. Click here to read....

Grenade attack on polling station in Pulwama

On 06 May, terrorists (group unknown) threw a grenade at Rohmoo polling station in Pulwama district where polling was on-going for Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency. There was no reports of casualties in the explosion. This was the first militant attack on a polling station during the 2019 Lok Sabha election in J&K. Click here to read....

Politician killed by terrorists in Anantnag

On 04 May, terrorists killed BJP’s district Vice-President Ghulam Mohammad Mir (55 years-old), at his house in Nowgam Verinag in Anantnag district. Ghulam had contested Assembly Elections as BJP candidate. Mir was under constant threat from terrorists, yet his security was withdrawn by the Government, alleged BJP’s State Spokesperson Altaf Thakur. Click here to read....

Three HM terrorists killed in CT operation in Shopian

On 30 April, the joint team of Rashtriya Rifles (RR), CRPF and Special Operations Group of J&K police conducted counter-terrorism operation in Adkhara village of Shopian district in which three terrorists of HM including a top commander, Lateef Ahmad Dar aka Tiger of Pulwama, were killed. Other two terrorists were identified as Tariq Sheikh aka Mufti, and Shakir Ahmad. During the operation, an Army soldier was injured. Click here to read....

Security Forces arrested two LeT terrorists in Ramban

On 13 May, the joint search party of J&K police, Rashtriya Rifles and 9 PARA arrested two LeT terrorists, Showkat Ahmad Sheikh, and Taweel Mohiuddin Dar, from Hara area of Gool in Ramban district in Jammu. An AK-47 rifle (with a magazine), and 30 rounds, and INR 8,770 were seized from the possession of arrested terrorists. A case under various sections of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) has been registered against both terrorists and the investigation is on-going. Click here to read....

Three JeM terrorists killed in CT operation in Pulwama

In a joint counter-terrorism operation on 16 May, three terrorists of JeM, Naseer Pandith, Umar Mir, and Khalid (Pakistan national), were killed by the security forces in Delipora area in Pulwama district. During the operation, a Rashtriya Rifles jawan, Sepoy Sandeep Kumar attained martyrdom, and a civilian, Rayees Dar lost his life. According to the police, Naseer Pandith was involved in the killing of a policeman Mohammad Yaqoob Shah of Pulwama in 2018 on the eve of Eid. The security forces recovered criminating material, arms and ammunitions from the operation site. Click here to read....

Delhi Police arrested JeM terrorist in Srinagar

On 12 May, a team of Delhi Police arrested a JeM terrorist, Adul Majeed, from his hideout in Srinagar. Adul Majeed was brought to Delhi on transit remand for further interrogation. Click here to read....

Security Forces kill IS-JK terrorist in Shopian

On 10 May, a joint Cordon-and-Search Operation (CASO) was conducted by the Army and Special Operations Group of J&K police in Amshipora-Ramnagari village in Shopian district. During the operation, militants opened fire which led to exchange of fire. Ishfaq Ahmad Sofi aka Abdulla Bhai, a close aid of Zakir Musa and commander of Islamic State-Jammu and Kashmir (IS-JK) outfit led by Zakir Musa, was killed. In May 2017, Islamic State (IS) had claimed to have established its Indian affiliate group, Ansar Ghazwat ul-Hind (AGuH) headed by Zakir Musa, who had quit the HM earlier. Click here to read....

Left-Wing Extremism
Six Maoists surrendered in Andhra Pradesh

On 06 May, six Maoist terrorists surrendered before the Visakhapatnam’s District Superintendent of Police (SP) Attada Banuji. According to media report, out of six Maoists, two of them, Golluru Birusu, and Golluri Ramaiah, were members of CPI-Maoist (Communist Party of India-Maoist) Pedabayalu Area Committee. The remaining four, Korra Sttibabu, Golluri Satyanarayana, Korra Ganapati, and Korra Patro, were ‘hard-core’ militia members. Click here to read....

15 Security personnel martyred in IED blast in Maharashtra

On 01 May, hours after Maoists set ablaze around 30 road construction vehicles, 15 Security Force personnel were martyred in an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) explosion in Gadchiroli district in Maharashtra. The explosion took place around 1230 hours near a nullah called Lendari. This was stated by the Deputy Inspector-General of Police (Gadchiroli Range)Ankush Shinde. Click here to read....

Maoist affected region in Jharkhand witnessed more voting over 2014

According to data from the Election Commission, the Maoist affected region in Jharkhand witnessed seven per cent higher voting than what was recorded in 2014. Three Lok Sabha seats, Lohardagga, Palamau, and Chatra, witnessed 64.38 per cent voting as compared to 57 per cent registered in 2014. These three are spread over six Maoist affected districts of Jharkhand. Interestingly, family members of the Maoists, who have consistently called for boycotting the polls, voted in 2019 on-going polls. Click here to read....

30 surrendered Women Maoists joined commando team in Chhattisgarh

For the first time, 30 surrendered women Maoists caders joined the commando unit of Chhattisgarh police in Dantewada district of Bastar region. They have been deployed in Malangir area. The women platoon of District Reserve Guard (DRG) is named as Danteshwari Ladake or Danteshwari Fighters for operations in jungles of Malangir area committee. According to the Superintendent of Police of Dantewada, Abhishek Pallava, in the district there are five male platoons of DRG and this women platoon would be the sixth. This is the first time when women commando unit is being used for full operations in the area. Click here to read....

Islamist Extremism in India (including Islamic State)
NIA arrested a youth in ‘IS Kasaragod case’ from Kerala

In a statement released on April 29, the NIA said that the agency had arrested Riyas A. aka Riyas Abu Bakr aka Abu Dujana (29 years-old) in connection with investigation of 2016 IS-Kasaragod case, for allegedly conspiring suicide attack in Kerala. According to the statement, Riyas followed the videos and speeches of the mastermind of the 2019 Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka, Zahran Hashim. During interrogation, he confessed to have been in contact with IS operative Abdul Rashid Abdulla who had travelled to IS-controlled territory in Afghanistan. He was also in contact with Abdul Khayoom, an accused of IS Valapattanam case, and believed to be in Syria. Click here to read....

Islamic State announced its province in India

Islamic State (IS)’s media outlet, Amaq News Agency, announced that the organisation had established its own province in Kashmir valley and named it ‘Wilayah of Hind’. The announcement also claimed that the terrorist killed by the Indian security forces in Shopian district had pledged allegiance to IS. Click here to read....

NIA arrested an IS sympathiser from Kerala

Following the arrest and interrogation of an IS operative Riyas Abu Bakr, NIA arrested Muhammad Faizal Hameed Kunju (25 years) for his alleged connection with the IS. Muhammad Faizal, who was living in Qatar, was found to be spreading pro-IS and conspiring messages of terror strikes. Muhammad was brought to the Nedumbassery Airport in Kochi from Qatar and arrested by the NIA. Click here to read....

Khalistan-Inspired Extremism
Two BKI terrorists arrested from Punjab and Delhi

On 03 May, the police arrested two terrorists of Babbar Khalsa International (BKI), Jaspreet Singh, and Mohammad Shareef, from Punjab and Delhi respectively, and recovered 15 Passports, a pistol, six live cartridges, and Pakistani currency from their possession. Both the accused were absconders in a case where in FIR was lodged on 07 February against four people under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act [UA(P)A] by the Balachaur police. According to the Superintendent of Police of Nawanshahr, the duo were produced in the Court and were granted three-day police custody. Click here to read....

J&K Governor’s Twitter handle hacked by unknown elements

A statement released by Jammu and Kashmir Raj Bhavan has stated that on 30 April, the Twitter handle/account of the Governor of J&K was hacked by some unknown elements and he was shown as follower in the Twitter handle of Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan. Immediately, necessary actions was taken to rectify the intrusion and the matter was reported to J&K Police for investigation. Click here to read....

NITI Aayog proposed INR 7,500 crore plan for AI

The NITI Aayog has proposed an institutional framework for Artificial Intelligence (AI) with INR 7,500 crore funding for the creation of Cloud computing platform “AIRAWAT” and other research institutes in India. The proposal suggests that the new government shall provide INR 7,500 crore initially over three-year period and establish a high-level taskforce to oversee the over-all roll out and implementation of AI. Under the framework, five research centres, and 20 AI adoption international centres has been planned.

According to the proposal, the entire AI mission will be monitored by a task force which will be led by a member of NITI Aayog, with representatives from all ministries and States. The AI would help in addressing some of the key challenges in social sectors such as education, health, agriculture, urbanisation, and mobility. Click here to read....

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