As the finger-pointing and blame-fixing over India’s response to the attack on Pathankot begins, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval spoke to Outlook’s investigations editor Meetu Jain.
On Team Modi: “There is absolutely no turf war within the government. People say this because they don’t know the facts. In a team, when 11 people are playing, then there is no turf war between them. There is only one ball and the concerned persons play the ball in the position they are trained for.”
On intelligence inputs: “Intelligence gathering is the job of the Intelligence Bureau. The army cannot say we will gather the intelligence and the intelligence people cannot say we will go for the assault job. So there cannot be turf war.”
On army-IB cooperation: “We all play in our respective positions. And the captain can be a person who doesn’t even have to be in the team. Security agencies work as a very well-knit team.
On response: “In security matters what happens to you is important but what matters more is how you respond to it. The terrorist always has the advantage of the first attacker and therefore in the first initiative he can cause damage.”
On operational objectives: “Success of an operation lies in achieving its objectives and denying the adversary his goal. Whether an operation is successful or not is determined by only one factor: whether we have been able to achieve our defined objectives and deny the adversary what they want.”
On India’s future preparedness: “India has got the resources, the experience and it has got a highly motivated security apparatus to deal with counter-terrorism.”