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  • Why Bangalore?

    by Rohin
    30th December, 2005 at 3:48 am    

    Pickled Politics was one of the first blogs to react to the Delhi blasts, but I thought I’d wait a little before talking about the Bangalore shooting, which took place on Wednesday, so that I might be able to collect some more information.

    A college professor was killed by a gunman (gunmen?) who has escaped capture; four were injured. Bangalore has not been targetted in this manner before and the Indian Institute of Science, the location of the shooting, and the city have been taken by surprise. But warning signs were there.

    Initial thoughts to explain the target of Bangalore centred around Lashkar-e-Toiba group, responsible for numerous previous attacks or less well known Bangladesh-based terror groups. Some thought the fact that notorious gangster Abu Salem’s arrival in BLR to face polygraph tests and questioning about his involvement in the 1993 Bombay blasts may be related, but authorities soon denied this.

    Yesterday Karnataka’s chief minister, N. Dharam Singh, confirmed that the attacks were the work of terrorists, chiefly due to the discovery of sophisticated munitions found; an AK-57, AK-47 casings, an empty automatic magazine and four unexploded grenades were recovered from the scene.

    It was subsequently revealed that the government of Karnataka received a warning of a terrorist attack, from the Intelligence Bureau, which had been monitoring LeT operatives in New Delhi. They also considered Jamat-e-Mujaheeddin a threat. However, no information obtained would have been useful in preventing the attack.

    But why Bangalore and why the IISc?

    LeT has actually been planning an attack on BLR for four years, according to The Hindu. The first target, in 2001, was Azim Premji’s farmhouse (Premji is head of Wipro), but it is believed that plans were abandoned as LeT were unable to recruit locals. That didn’t really stop 9/11 did it? Doesn’t seem like a genuine reason. What’s more likely is they have simply been gathering information about the city since then. Irrespective, several LeT suspects and/or members have been arrested in relation to trips to Bangalore over the last few years.

    Deputy Commissioner of Police and chief of the New Delhi anti-terrorist cell, Ajay Kumar, had also warned that Hyderabad and Bangalore were likely to be future targets for terrorist attacks. A key suspect interrogated by Kumar had claimed to have been trained by the Pakistani Inter Services Intelligence in Balochistan and Bangladesh. He said he had been told to attack one of BLR’s software parks. Other recent arrests were three suspected terrorists from Bangalore, West Bengal and Bangladesh. However, none of the leads police had prior to Wednesday had mentioned IISc.

    The chief reason Bangalore has become a target seems simple jealousy. Bangalore has become India’s flagship city, with Asia’s silicon valley and property prices akin to Kensington. Its burgeoning and world-renowned IT industry is emblematic of ‘India Shining’. TIME magazine today asked “Is Outsourcing the Next Terror Target?” and calls the shooting a symbolic attack on India’s economic success.

    IISc itself is a key cog in India’s missile technology development. Indeed, many defence and strategic programmes have been deliberately located in Bangalore over many years for one reason - it is further from Pakistan and China than Delhi. The IISc is also home to the National Institute of Advanced Studies, which works closely with the department of defence.

    What is clear is that Bangalore and the businesses situated therein are completely unprepared for this sort of assault. Whilst the city is on high alert now, security will have to be beefed up across Bangalore, as it will remain a target for some time.


    Quick roundup:

    The Wall Street Journal says:

    22% of Americans think Saddam Hussein helped plan 9/11
    26% of Americans believe Iraq had WMDs
    24% of Americans think some of the 9/11 hijackers were Iraqi
    56% of Americans think Iraqis are doing better than they were under Hussein - I would’ve expected this one to be higher actually.

    These figures, though still mind-boggling, are actually down significantly from February, when almost 50% thought Hussein planned 9/11. Astonishing.

    From Boing Boing: 16 year old Floridian student decides to fly to Iraq for a school assignment…without telling his parents.

    Atal Bihari Vajpayee, recently named one of INDIA TODAY’s 30 Living Legends (and one of the few Indian politicians I particularly admire) has announced his retirement.

                  Post to

    Filed in: Current affairs,India,South Asia,The World

    25 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs
    1. Thought Leadership

      Outstanding Questions on Outsourcing

      I have read hundreds of blogs (way too many to link to) but have chosen some of my favorites…

    1. Col. Mustafa — on 30th December, 2005 at 1:46 pm  

      This 16 yr olds nuts, but also quite inspiring.

      Humans try and progress, and other humans try and ruin it.
      urrgh, i hate humans.
      Is killing really needed?
      Can you not talk about your problems?
      All get together, see what has to be done for the better of your own people obviously, and then try and sort it out.

      Don’t grab grenades which you don’t even know how to use, or guns and start killing innocent people who don’t know why theyv’e even been killed.
      Especially before new years and everything, it just does your head in.


    2. Rohin — on 30th December, 2005 at 1:54 pm  

      Inspiring? He’s a class A idiot! Especially as he got completely stiffed by the Kuwaiti cab drivers - $250 for three cab rides, haha! They can spot a foreigner a mile off, no matter how Arabic you look.

    3. FOB — on 30th December, 2005 at 2:57 pm  

      BLR is back to normal…no days of work were lost and people are more determined than not to let the terrorists win.
      It’s time to stop the pretense of the “peace process” we have with the Pakis and start putting the squeeze on them militarily, diplomatically and economimcally. There can be no peace in the face of terrorism.
      One thing I admire about the Americans and Israeils is that they goddamn take some actionafter terrorist attacks and not just sit around impotently like the Indian government.

    4. raz — on 30th December, 2005 at 3:49 pm  


      Even if a cow dies of old age in India, someone will find a way to blame Pakistan. The same way Muslim HT/MPAC goons blame everything from 9/11 to 7/7 on Mossad and ‘the Jews’, so these Indian losers blame every bad thing that happens in India on ISI and the big bad Pakistani boogeyman. A sad indictment of the backward nature of Indian society. Until India grows up, stops obsessing about Pakistan and starts confronting the cancer of violence which exists at the heart of Indian society, they will never progress as a nation.

    5. Rohin — on 30th December, 2005 at 4:39 pm  

      Raz, I’ve always been accepting of your views on here as I can’t differentiate between people who are pro-Pak and pro-India. But if you think ROFLMAO is an appropriate way to respond in a thread about a terrorist attack, that’s a bit insensitive. Anyway, I know you were trying to convey your opinion that India shouldn’t link things to Pakistan as a knee-jerk response. The fact remains though, that the vast majority of terrorist attacks in India over the last 50 HAVE involved Pakistanis; frequently over Kashmir.

      Sure, we don’t know for definite yet. But coupled with warnings from Pakistani Islamist groups that BLR will be a target, info from detained suspects and the modus operandi - it doesn’t seem unreasonable to assume this may be linked to Pakistan. What is this ‘cancer of violence’ you talk about? Until it confronts this India won’t progress as a nation? So…what’s it doing right now? I’d say India is progressing at quite a rapid pace.

      However, there is talk that Bangladesh may be involved - but I didn’t want to include that as it’s still hearsay at the moment.

      Having said all that, FOB I strongly disagree that the best course of action is to ‘put the squeeze on Pakistan’. I’ve been encouraged by recent dialogue between the countries, if we let things like this derail it, the terrorists have won.

      You want to follow America and Israel’s example? America is thousands of miles from the M. East so not in immediate danger, Pakistan and INdia are neighbours. Israel is in the same boat - and they have something like one hundred times more suicide bombings than India. Is that what you want?

    6. raz — on 30th December, 2005 at 5:09 pm  

      Rohin, I’m not laughing at the terror attack, so apologies if that was what you construed. I was laughing at the ridiculous tendency amongst Indians to blame every act of violence in India on Pakistan.
      Your statement about the vast majority of terrorist attacks in India being caused by Pakistanis is laughable, and a classic example of this ‘head in the sand’ attitude. Do you KNOW how many insurgencies there are going on in India?! And why are you so obsessed with Kashmir? Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Nagaland, Manipur, Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and even Punjab (remember the Sikhs?) all have militant groups in operation.

      Here, just in the last few days:

      Gunbattle in Manipur

      Strike called to protest Indian army atrocities

      Two killed in Assam

      Four killed in Assam firing,0008000500010000.htm

      Why are you so bothered about what happened in Bangalore, and so silent about what goes on in Assam and Manipur? By the way, here’s something else that just popped up:

      Mass grave discovered in Gujurat,001301170000.htm

      Stop blaming Pakistan for your problems and sort out your own mess.

    7. Rohin — on 30th December, 2005 at 5:33 pm  

      My mess? I’m British!

      Of course I know there are insurgencies in India, I don’t ignore them - but when the target is a major city, it makes headlines. That’s just the nature of news. Assam is off the map to most people, even inside India - it doesn’t register. I wouldn’t want this to turn into something that just regurgitates South Asian news, the BBC’s better at doing that. Plus I have a lot of links with BLR and Delhi, I’m not going to deny I take an interest in these cities more than the countryside. Likewise a government-sponsored shooting in China got no coverage a few weeks ago as it was in a rural area.

      Mizoram, Assam, Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura and Meghalaya have been locations of various incidents, but attacks on Parliament or shopping malls in the capital not only get more coverage because of their venue, but because the planning has been across international borders. ‘Freedom struggles’ are internal, any attack involving Pakistan is international.

      If I was to take into account areas outside the cities - then in J&K alone there have been over fifty terrorist attacks which have been traced back to Pakistan since 2001 and it is identified as the area of India with the highest incidence of terrorism. Terrorists (not armed forces) killed 2850 people in J&K in 2001 alone. In the same year, the death toll in all North Eastern states caused by terrorism was 747. So you can see a stark difference. The Sunday Times numbered Pakistani jehadis operating inside India in 2002 at 200,000.

      Look, I’m not someone interested in demonising Pakistan and I hope you don’t think I am. But equally I’m not willing to accept that Pakistan-based groups have a minor role in terrorism in India, the statistics simply don’t support that.

      If you want to sit and list everything bad that’s happening in India, I can do the same about Pakistan. Nobody gets anywhere and I would get bored. Both countries have shit going on, on that we can surely agree?

    8. raz — on 30th December, 2005 at 6:19 pm  

      “Both countries have shit going on, on that we can surely agree?”

      When did I say anything to the contrary? Rohin, this isn’t about one country being more peaceful than the other. Both countries suffer from a high frequency of internal violence. I’m bothered about BLAME. Pakistan has endured plenty of terrorist attacks of its own, but you don’t see the finger constantly being pointed across at India as ‘cross border terrorism’.
      Who traced back these attacks to Pakistan? The Indian authorities -LOL. If ‘freedom struggles’ are internal then why isn’t Kashmir internal? So there are no Indian Kashmiris involved in this?! You don’t think other insurgencies in India get foriegn support? The mind boggles at such denial. 200,000 Pakistani terrorists in India?! That’s bigger than most world armies! What absurdity!

      BTW, I wouldn’t trust any statistic coming out of the Indian government about terrorism. It wouldn’t suprise me at all to see Kashmiri figures overinflated and north-eastern figures played down. Why does India forbid human rights organisations from freely investiagting in Kashmir?
      Not to mention the Indian army is well known for killing civilians in Kashmir and then trying to blame militants for the atrocities. A famous example is this:

    9. Vikrant — on 30th December, 2005 at 6:36 pm  

      Now whos a one trick pony here? Probably raz has enough free time at hands to check on everything bad that happens in India.

      For one dont dismiss Indian Intelligence agencies. Your country is no saint. Mush is playing his double game with west. While on one hand authroties are claiming that they have reined in on terrorist camps, India continues to bear the brunt of terror attacks. How would you explain Azar Mehmood and a the-guy-who-killed-pearl (both released in 1999 IC814 hijacking) turning up in Pakistan and establishing JeM..

      No one likes to see his country described as a terror state, but sadly Pakistan is one. Reality bites man…

    10. Rohin — on 30th December, 2005 at 6:50 pm  

      Guys guys, please. I’m just not interested in having another Kargil on this thread. I’ll close comments if that’s what it becomes. Raz I take your point on board - you are irritated by the immediate link to Pakistan, fine. For what it’s worth, here at PP we have just reported the facts and not made any conclusions. It is, of course, all speculation at the moment.

      Vikrant, don’t worry - several weeks ago I called Raz a one trick pony, but both of you have improved since then!

      I feel like a school teacher. J/k (just kidding, not Jammu and Kashmir) I don’t want to sound patronising. But we all know you two won’t agree and I’ll be stuck trying to keep the peace. So, for MY sake, no more!

      Here’s a quote from Bill Hicks about army sizes (as you mentioned it Raz):

      “A war is when TWO armies are fighting… People said ‘uh-uh Bill, Iraq had the fourth largest army in the world.’ Yeah maybe, but you know what? After the first three largest armies, there’s a real big fuckin’ drop off, all right? The Hare Krishnas are the fifth biggest army in the world… and they’ve already got our airports.”

    11. raz — on 30th December, 2005 at 7:39 pm  

      Rohin, Bill Hicks was a very funny man :)

      Seasons greeting to my dear Vikrant :) How’s the mock GCSE revision going?

    12. FOB — on 30th December, 2005 at 7:54 pm  

      Rohin, there is no point in carrying on the so called peace process.The only thing we get out of it is more terrorism.

      All the damn buses and trains running allow even more Pakis to sneak in and commit terrorist acts.

      Honestly there is no solution to the Kashmir dispute anyway.It is going to be status quo forever.So what the hell are they talking about?

      Most Pakis are exemplified by raz here.Their core identity is anti-Indian. Even if Kashmir is solved , they will find some other issue .That is the only way that artificial country can sustain its unity.

      India broke them apart before, we will do it again.
      Baluchis are fighting a war of independence right now.Hope our government wakes up and supports them for their right of self determination.

    13. Rohin — on 30th December, 2005 at 8:12 pm  

      “Seasons greeting to my dear Vikrant :) How’s the mock GCSE revision going?”

      I feel the love! Now I’m off to get squiffy, play nice.

    14. Siddharth — on 31st December, 2005 at 2:34 am  

      Rohin (5): However, there is talk that Bangladesh may be involved - but I didn’t want to include that as it’s still hearsay at the moment.

      Rohin, why didn’t you put that disclaimer before the sections of your article where the points of speculation on the causes and culprits seemed to be indiscriminately insinuating it was “Pakistan” or “Bangladesh”. And then you get surprised when people react?

      Also, whats with making lazy statements like “there is talk that Bangladesh may be involved”. Sounds like you’re pre-empting an international incident in the subcontinent! You’re talking about Bangladesh-based terrorists, surely. The same ones that are being a nuisance in Bangladesh, I’d like to remind you.

      I know that this is a blog and we have to expect a certain amount of poetic license, but the signal to noise ratio in this article was shockingly low. More links on where this information is sourced from would be much more in keeping with the standards we have come to expect from pickled poleetiks.

    15. El Cid — on 31st December, 2005 at 9:47 am  

      You’ve missed your vocation Sid. There’s clearly a future for you as a subeditor. (You’re a Doc right, or am I confusing you with Al-Hack?).

    16. Rohin — on 31st December, 2005 at 2:30 pm  

      Ah Sid, the specific line you object to is a comment, I set far lower standards for my commenting as opposed to the actual posts! I confess, this was a rushed article, but it’s a bit of a quiet time what with Sunny being away and others on holiday etc so I felt I ought to write something. I don’t feel anything in the actual article was that objectionable, I did say “Bangladesh-based terror groups” and the only time I mentioned Pakistan is in reference to what a suspect is reported to have said.

    17. Siddharth — on 31st December, 2005 at 3:40 pm  

      Aré Rohin! Not complaining about the writing or the sentiments behind the article. They were impeccable as ever. I guess the rule of thumb is never rush a post just as you’re rushing to go out to “get squiffy” (13).

    18. Don — on 1st January, 2006 at 4:16 pm  


      rather inappropriate, but just this once;

      George W Bush dies and goes to Hell, where he is met by Satan who says,

      ‘Bit of a problem, George. You’re in the right place, but we’re full. I’m going to have to bump somebody upstairs so you can have their room. You can choose who.’

      In the first room Richard Nixon sits by the side of a tank full of liquid sewage, into which he must forever dive, seeking something he will never find. Bush excuses himself on the grounds that he is not much of a swimmer.

      In the second room LBJ heaves a sledgehammer at a rock that constantly renews itself. Bush explains he has a dodgy shoulder.

      In the third room Clinton is strapped to a bed, being fellated by Monica Lewinski. Bush considers for a moment. ‘OK’, he says, ‘I think I can manage that.’

      ‘Fair enough,’ says Satan, ‘Monica, off you go.’

    19. Sajn — on 1st January, 2006 at 4:21 pm  

      The first rule of comedy is that a joke should be funny…

    20. Vikrant — on 1st January, 2006 at 6:21 pm  

      Dont feed the troll cow.

      Keeper Vikrant

    21. Bollywood Scum — on 2nd January, 2006 at 7:46 pm  

      Why Bangalore?

      If these insurgents want to attack the main ‘prestige’ industries of India….

      how soon before its Goa and its tourist industry?

    22. Panda — on 2nd January, 2006 at 9:46 pm  

      It is hilarious to see Raz having a nervous breakdown and wet his pants whenever the obvious and real link between Pakistan and international terrorism is made.

      I know its probably because he feels ashamed of the fact that many roads of throat cutting and suicide bombing end in his Motherland but you have to deal with it Raz - that is what your country is known for across the world. Dont cry like a baby, face up to it.

    23. Panda — on 2nd January, 2006 at 9:48 pm  

      Bollywood Scum

      Goa also attracts lots of Israeli tourists, as does Himachal Pradesh in the north - I hope that people are aware that because of the strong Israeli presence in these states they are potential targets for the Jihadi Scumbags.

      Now let me watch as Raz needs to get his nappies changed for describing them as Jihadi scumbags ;-)

    24. Panda — on 2nd January, 2006 at 9:54 pm  

      Raz I read your posts again - you are one of these Pakistanis with an inferiority complex who has a nervous breakdown every ten seconds about India arent ya - so cute! ;-)

      And who has a whole batch of links and knows the name of every social problem in the country at hand - and then accuses Indians of being obsessed with Pakistan - thats hilarious! :-)

      Get a life you sap - whatever Indian’s problems are, for a Pakistani to cuss and accuse otherwise of backwardness and ‘inherent violence’ is a comedy show - get on stage on jongleurs you’ll bring the house down ;-)

      And Pakistani based terroist groups have been implicated in major acts of terrorism around the world including in London - so get your head out of your backside and smell the coffee (or the semtex!) ;-)

      Everyone else is.

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