Lauding the role of former director general of Punjab police late KPS Gill in bringing peace to terrorism-hit Punjab, chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Wednesday said that he inspired the state police and beat the separatist forces with courage.
“He chose to react to the terrorists and terror activities with a firm hand,” said CM, adding that Gill was posted in Punjab when there was so much fear that even the police stations used to shut after sunset. During the dark days 1,700 police officers and cops were killed and 30,000 Punjabis lost lives.
In his keynote address in the 2nd KPS Gill Memorial Lecture, on the contemporary subject of ‘Digitised hate: Online radicalism, violent extremism and terrorism’, held here on Wednesday, while sharing his experiences during the days of terrorism, CM compared Gill to Germany’s commander Erwin Rommel and added that one never forgets a good commander and it was an honour to work with Gill.
The lecture was the brainchild of former Punjab DGP Suresh Arora as a tribute to the ‘super-cop’.
In his welcome address, DGP Dinkar Gupta briefly outlined the security scenario and use of internet and social media platforms. He said Punjab Police was continuously building its capacity to meet the twin challenges of radicalism and terrorism.
Noted American expert on terror and internal security, Dr Peter Chalk spoke in detail on the impact of internet on radicalisation and its implications on India, confirming that efforts are made on the social media to radicalise young Sikhs by pro-Khalistani militants in Pakistan and diaspora groups operating out of the US, UK and Canada (read guest column for details).
Amarinder concluded pointing out that in the globalised world of today, terror could easily straddle geographical boundaries, with the use of internet and social media further contributing to promoting terror and terror ideology for luring youth, spreading hatred and propaganda.
Pointing to the sensitive location of Punjab as a border state with a hostile neighbour, and the growing challenge of narco terrorism with linkages in Jammu and Kashmir, Amarinder, “We can’t ever allow the state to relive those horrible days it went through…we all know what’s happening again now,” he said.
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