ISLAMABAD: The Indian spy agency, Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), has established yet another desk with a special allocation of a huge sum of money at its headquarters on Lodhi Road, New Delhi, to scuttle the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Rajinder Khanna, the current chief of RAW, is personally supervising the desk as he reports to Prime Minister Narendra Modi directly and seeks instructions from him.
RAW, created in the wake of the 1965 war between Pakistan and India, has been assigned the gigantic assignment to ruin the trade corridor project, the biggest operation after the creation of Bangladesh tasked to it immediately after its creation way back in September 1968.
Highly-placed sources told The News here on Sunday that Pakistan’s intelligence gathering agencies had collected authentic evidence and proof about the designs of RAW that has already initiated its work. RAW is known for sponsoring terror activities for attaining its objectives. It is engaged in promoting and aiding disruptive elements in Pakistan to destabilise the country.
The budget of RAW isn’t known to anyone but $300 million have been earmarked initially for subverting the economic corridor.Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan possesses the evidence provided by various agencies regarding the nefarious designs of RAW in Pakistan and he could soon share the same with the nation, the sources pointed out.
RAW is not answerable to the Indian Parliament on any count, which keeps it out of reach of the Right to Information Act of India.The sources, while referring to the charter of RAW, revealed that the present RAW objectives include, and are not limited to, monitoring the political, military, economic and scientific developments in countries which have direct bearing on India’s national security and the formulation of its foreign policy and moulding international public opinion with the help of strong and vibrant Indian Diaspora and to carry out covert operations to safeguard India’s national interests. It also aims to control and limit the supply of military hardware to Pakistan, mostly from European countries, America and more importantly from China.
RAW has been organised on the lines of CIA. The head of RAW is designated “Secretary (Research)” in the Cabinet Secretariat. Most of the previous chiefs have been experts on either Pakistan or China. They also have the benefit of training in either the USA or the UK, and more recently in Israel. The “Secretary (R)” is under direct command of Indian prime minister. An additional secretary responsible for the Office of Special Operations and intelligence collected from different countries processed by large number of joint secretaries, who are the functional heads of various specified desks with different regional divisions/areas/countries: Area one – Pakistan; Area two – China and Southeast Asia; Area three – the Middle East and Africa; and Area four – other countries.
Two special joint secretaries, reporting to the additional secretary, head the Electronics and Technical Department. The RAW personnel are called “research officers” instead of the traditional “agents”. There are a sizeable number of female officers in it even at the operational level.
In recent years, RAW has shifted its primary focus to Pakistan-China cooperation. It has mustered support from some Western agencies for the purpose. Activities and functions of RAW are highly confidential and declassification of past operations are uncommon unlike agencies like CIA, MI6 and Mossad who have many of their activities declassified. The primary mission of RAW includes aggressive intelligence collection via espionage, psychological warfare, subversion, sabotage and assassinations.
RAW maintains active collaboration with other secret services in various countries. Its contacts with FSB of Russia, NDS, the Afghan agency, Israel’s Mossad, CIA, and MI6 have been well-known, a common interest being Pakistan’s nuclear programme. RAW has been active in obtaining information and operating through third countries like Afghanistan, the UK, Myanmar, Hong Kong, and Singapore.
RAW obtains information critical to Indian strategic interests both by overt and covert means. The data is then classified and filed with the assistance of computer networks. The sources reminded that in the early 1970s, Pakistan armed forces launched a crackdown in response to the so-called Bangladesh independence movement. Nearly 10 million refugees fled to India. RAW was instrumental in the formation of the Bangladeshi guerrilla organisation Mukti Bahni and was responsible for supplying information, providing training and heavy ammunition to this organisation. It is also alleged that RAW planned and executed the 1971 Indian Airlines hijacking as a false flag operation to ban over-flights by Pakistani aircraft and disrupt Pakistani troop movement in then East Pakistan. Special Frontier Force, the paramilitary wing of RAW, actively participated in military operations, especially in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. The war ended in the successful creation of Bangladesh. However, within years of independence of Bangladesh, Sheikh Mujib was assassinated at his residence. RAW operatives claimed that they had advance information about his assassination but Sheikh Mujib tragically ignored inputs. He was brutally killed along with 40 members of his family. RAW thus failed to prevent the assassination which led to the loss of a charismatic leader who was appreciative of India for its help.
Later, RAW successfully thwarted plans of assassinating his daughter Sheikh Hasina Wajid by extremists. The sources revealed a joint secretary who has background of Police Service has been assigned for the fresh task, i.e. working with close collaboration of other desks in the Raw and Ministry of External Affairs of India in South Block. The activities on the soil of Pakistan by RAW have been documented and the details pertaining to it would be made public next week, the sources added.