The Indian Home/Interior minister Rajnath Singh is visiting Moscow on Sunday, September 18 for intensive discussions on how to jointly curb terrorism with Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev.

Rajnath Singh. Source:AFP/East News
Rajnath Singh. Source:AFP/East News

An official in the Indian government, who declined to be identified, said the Home Minister’s five-day long visit to Russia was intended to provide details of the kind of terrorism Pakistan is practising against both India and Afghanistan, and the way it is fomenting trouble in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. He will also outline the increasing sway of Islamic State in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and discuss ways to curb the spread of the organisation, which is banned both in Russia and India as a terrorist organisation.

Among the key issues Singh will discuss are real-time sharing of intelligence inputs, cyber security and critical infrastructure protection, countering illicit finance, global supply chain security, megacity policing and science and technology.

Many terrorists from Al-Qaeda and the Taliban have, in recent months, sworn their allegiance to ISIS and the concept of the Islamic Emirate, the boundaries of which they have sworn o spread “from the shores of the Mediterranean to the Arabian Sea and beyond,” a member of an intelligence agency told RIR.

Home Minister Singh will travel to Washington from Moscow on September 23 to carry the discussion process forward and try to further enhance anti-terror and homeland security cooperation with the United States. The 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) will be on in New York when India’s home minister travels to the USA.

Sushma Swaraj, India’s External Affairs Minister will be in New York during the UNGA session and will also aim to raise the pressure on Islamabad by urging the international community to isolate Pakistan as a state sponsor of terrorism.

“In both the bilateral visits to Russia and the US, the Home Minister will highlight Pakistan’s direct involvement in cross border terrorism and growing activities of the Middle East terror group in India and its neighbourhood,” an official in the home ministry said. “The bilateral visits of the Home Minister are part of India’s efforts to create global opinion against Pakistan sponsored terrorism in India,” the official said.

India has recently begun seriously raising the pressure on Pakistan, particularly since the violence has spurted in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), India’s northernmost and only Muslim majority state.

Sources also indicated that India’s Home Minister would seek suggestions on how to curb the ongoing violence and unrest in J&K and restore peace there. Singh would meet with senior intelligence and police officers while in Moscow.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has, earlier this month, repeatedly raised the issue of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism, even naming it and seeking international isolation of countries which foment terrorism at multilateral forums like the G20 and the BRICS meeting in Hangzhou, China on September 4 and 5, and the East Asia Summit in Vientiane, capital of the Lao PDR on September 7 and 8.

Calling on the international community to isolate and sanction instigators of terrorism, Modi urged the countries present at those forums to intensify joint efforts to combat terrorism and to take “coordinated actions” to “isolate supporters and sponsors of terror.”

The Indian Prime Minister urged the members of the G-20 and East Asia Summit (EAS) to “dispel double standards” on the issue of terrorism, which was the “greatest threat” to the world and to development.

Modi met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the BRICS meeting and the G-20 summit in China, while he met with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev at the EAS in the Lao Republic. Combating terrorism and enhancing security was a key item in their brief discussions, sources in the Ministry of External Affairs told RIR.

Singh’s visit to the capitals of both Russia and the US is particularly significant as India has indicated that it will not tolerate the issue of “terror export” from Pakistan any longer. He is likely to call on President Putin during his visit to Moscow.

India already has an ongoing multi-faceted security dialogue with both Russia and the USA.