Ministry of Home Affairs
azadi ka amrit mahotsav g20-india-2023

Text of Union Home and Cooperation Minister Shri Amit Shah's address at the concluding session of the 90th INTERPOL General Assembly

Posted On: 21 OCT 2022 4:30PM by PIB Delhi

Friends,

It is a great pleasure for me to address the closing session, of Interpol’s 90th General Assembly,’ organized in New Delhi during the 75th year of India’s independence.

Today’s date, the 21st of October, is a very important day for the Indian police.  India observes this day as Police Commemoration day.

35000 policemen have sacrificed their lives protecting India’s  unity and democracy.

Today, together with the President and Secretary General of Interpol, I paid tribute at the police memorial, to all those policemen.

Organised after the covid pandemic, this General Assembly of Interpol is in itself very special.

During covid, the world has seen and experienced the human side of the police.

Over the last 100 years, Interpol has become a very large and effective platform comprising of 195 countries, that is playing a very important role in controlling crime across the world.

India is one of the oldest members of Interpol. It joined Interpol in 1949.

In today’s world, an organization like Interpol, is extremely necessary for cooperation and multilateralism.

On behalf of the government of India, India’s home ministry and India’ various police forces, I commend Interpol’s  meaningful efforts and contribution to public security, world peace and stability.

The criminal justice system is not something new for India. Whenever the concept of ‘state’ was introduced, policing must have emerged as the first responsibility of the state. The security of its citizens is for any state, its first responsibility.

In Indian thought, there are deep reflections available on  law and penal policy.  Thousands of years ago, in the Ramayana, an ancient Indian epic, Vidur, Shukracharya, Chanakya, Thirukural etc accepted the principle of amicable justice and due punishment.

In the epic, the Mahabharata, in the Book of peace, there is a verse in chapter 15 which means:

In order to control criminals, a justice system is a necessary aspect of any effective and successful governing mechanism.

It is only justice that can ensure good governance in society.

It is only when justice is awake, even at night, that citizens and the society are fearless, and a good society can be built.

At present, under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi, the government of India, is continuously taking necessary steps to ensure that our police force is always ready to face any challenge.

The Indian government has recently taken several new initiatives to address challenges of the future.

The Indian government has established the National Forensic Science University.

The key pillars of criminal justice that form the ICJS (Inter operable criminal justice system) ie e-courts, e-prisons,

e-forensics and e-prosecution have been linked to Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and systems (CCTNS)

The Indian government has also decided to create a national  database on crimes such as terrorism, narcotics and economic offences.  The Indian government has established the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Center, I4C, to combat cyber-crime in a comprehensive manner.

During this period characterized by a revolution in data and information, the nature of crime and criminals has changed.

Today crime has become borderless, and if we want to stop this kind of crime and these criminals, we all have to think beyond conventional geographic borders.

Given that criminal syndicates are using modern technology to collude at an international level, I see no reason why countries should not have cooperation and coordination between themselves.

This represents a dual challenge of sorts for the police and for law enforcement agencies

  1. On the one hand law has to enforced within the confines of the sovereignty of nations,
  2. On the other hand, we have to understand the global nature of crime, detect criminals and worry about justice as well.

In the midst of these challenges, to make the work of security agencies easier, the role of Interpol is very important and will become even more important in the future.

In this regard, I would like to draw the attention of the General Assembly to some issues.

Today, terrorism is a global problem and it is very appropriate that it is the first and most important of the 7 global policing goals of Interpol for the period 2020-2025.

“Addressing the threat of terrorism”

I firmly believe that ‘terrorism is the biggest violation of human rights.

In order to fight cross border terrorism, cross border cooperation is very important, and for this Interpol is the best platform.

First of all, all countries must agree on the definition of terrorism and terrorist.

The commitment to fight terrorism together, and narratives such as good terrorism, bad terrorism and small and big attacks, do not go together.

We also need to achieve a consensus on the cross-border propagation of terrorist ideologies through online radicalization.

We cannot consider this a political problem. We must all be committed to ensuring that an effective  fight against terrorism should be long term, comprehensive and sustainable.

India is committed to working with Interpol to fight all forms of terrorism and to provide technical assistance and human resources.

We have seen in many countries that the Interpol nodal agency and the counter terror agencies are different. Given this situation, in order to fight terrorism, we will have to bring together all the counter terrorism agencies of the world.

In this regard, I request Interpol to launch an initiative to set up a permanent mechanism for a real time information exchange line between counter terror agencies of all member countries.

On the occasion of the 75th anniversary of India’s independence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has put forward his vision of a drugs free India.

Given challenges such as the emerging trends of global trade in narcotics, and narco terror, close cooperation is needed between all countries,

Such as

  1. Platforms for the exchange of information and  intelligence
  2. Intelligence based joint campaigns
  3. Regional maritime security cooperation
  4. Mutual legal assistance
  5. An effective mechanism to fight money laundering.

India’s Narcotics Control Bureau has achieved a lot of success in seizing narcotics, destroying them, and taking cases to their logical conclusion .

I would also like to mention Interpol’s Operation

Lionfish and India’s Operation Garuda. And I would like to tell you that under Operation Lionfish, the biggest seizure has been made in India.

It is my request to Interpol that they carry out an initiative to set up a real time information exchange network between the anti-narcotic agencies of all member countries , as well as an extensive narco database.

It is my good fortune, that Interpol is beginning the celebrations of its centenary and that I am witnessing it.

I have been told, that during these 4 days, you also discussed Interpol’ global crime trend report 2022 and Interpol’s vision 2030.

At the same time, you also discussed agile policing, the metaverse and the changes taking place in the cyber threats landscape.

Apart from this, 2 key proposals have also been passed to increase the use of the I Familia database and the International  Child Sexual Exploitation database .

 When Interpol was established in 1923, crime and policing challenges at that time, and modes and methods of crime today are very different, a lot of changes have taken place, and it is quite natural that in the decades to come, even more changes will take place.

Criminal mindsets have not changed, but the means for crime are changing. In this regard, it is my suggestion that based on its experience and achievements over the last 100 years, Interpol, prepares a Future plan for the next 50 years .

Interpol can also set up a study group under its auspices,  which can carry out detailed research on the challenges likely in the next 35-50 years, and solutions for them. It can also produce a report called World Policing between 2048 and 2073.

And it will also be relevant to review this plan every 5 years.

I believe that this research will prove to be very useful for law enforcement agencies of member countries.

It gives me great pleasure to handover, at this forum, the Interpol flag to Austria.  My best wishes for the organization of the Vienna General Assembly.

Finally. I would like to reiterate on behalf of India, our commitment.

India is committed to working with Interpol as a partner to fight all forms of terrorism such as narco-terror, online radicalization, organized syndicates and money laundering.

In this regard, India is committed to supporting Interpol to establish a dedicated center or convention, and to start a dedicated communications network for the world’s counter terrorism and anti-narcotics agencies.

On behalf of the host country, I thank all the delegations for taking part in the New Delhi Interpol Assembly.

I am sure that this visit of yours to India, tourism in various places, and the festival of Diwali will always be memorable for you.

I commend Interpol and CBI for the excellent organization of the General Assembly.

I wish you all a very pleasant and safe return home and with these words, I conclude my speech.

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NW/RK/AY/SM/AK/AS



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