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Rediff.com  » News » Pune: NGO to begin edu course on counter-terrorism

Pune: NGO to begin edu course on counter-terrorism

October 01, 2009 17:20 IST
The Mumbai terror attack changed the way India thought. Not only did the attitude of the Indian security agencies change, but it even prompted an NGO to start a full fledged course on counter-terrorism so that every person knows how to handle a terror struck situation.

This course, a first of its kind, will be inaugurated at Pune on Friday coinciding with the Gandhi Jayanthi.

The brainchild of Sanjay Nahar, the founder of the NGO Sarhad told rediff.com that there is a huge interest that is being generated for this course and already there are 18 students who have enrolled. The idea to start India's first counter-terrorism course was mooted immediately after the Mumbai attack.

Nahar said that at the time of the attack, what was most noticeable was that there was a slight delay for the security forces to arrive. Moreover, people were taking completely off guard. This course would help people deal with situations of terror where they could do their bit.

Pune Commissioner of Police Dr Satyapal Singh will inaugurate the course, Nahar said, and will be run by the Sarhad Research Centre for Counter-terrorism and peace management.

Nahar also informed that they have applied for recognition from the University Grants Commission and are expecting the same very soon.

Among the 18 students who have enrolled 4 are girls. Among the girls there is an interesting case. Sumaya Zargar, 23, who hails from Kashmir has grown up amidst militancy all her life. Sumaya said that she encountered terror at close quarters when her uncle was tortured by terrorists and lost his life. Sumaya, who is a media professional, said that she does not want the next generation to go through this.

Nahar said that they have been receiving a very good response to the course and there have been queries from abroad too. Foreign students would be accommodated in the next batch since there were some technical difficulties this time, he added.

The course will conducted during the weekends. As part of the practical training the students will be taken to affected sites where they will be accompanied by senior police personnel and army personnel who have combated terrorism.

The first year of the course would include etymology and philosophy of terrorism, terrorist ideologies and modus operandi, national policy. It would also include the role of the print and electronic media.

The second year would concentrate on the various terror groups, the factors that make a terrorist, trafficking and other socio-economic factors that contribute to this menace.

Nahar said that during the course there would be a visiting faculty from terror affected countries such as Afghanistan, Sri-Lanka and Pakistan who would share their experience with the students and also tell them as to how their respective countries are battling this menace.

Vicky Nanjappa in Bengaluru