Tribune News Service
New Delhi, October 28
Addressing the issue of threats posed to national security in view of disasters and pandemics, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval on Thursday said, “The new areas of warfare have shifted from territorial frontiers to civil societies. Wars are now fought with other means.”
Doval was speaking at the 6th edition of the Pune Dialogue on National Security. The two-day seminar, titled “National Security Preparedness in the age of Disasters and Pandemics”, opened today. At the same event, Dr Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist, World Health Organisation, spoke on pandemics occurring in future. “It’s not if it will happen, it’s about when it will happen? And its waiting to happen,” she warned.
The Tribune Trust, Pune International Centre, Policy Perspectives Foundation of Delhi and Centre for Advanced Strategic Studies, Pune, are the partners to the event. Doval said transformative changes in global security landscape were taking place and actual wars were being substituted with wars fought with other means.
“Disasters and pandemics cannot be tackled in isolation,” Doval said, adding that the Covid-19 pandemic had brought science, data and economic security to the centre of national security.
“The new genres of security threats present multi-level dilemma on a massive scale. At the micro-level, they include saving individual lives, providing medical care and supporting people, ensuring the supplies of food and essential commodities, and maintaining law and order,” he added
Without naming any country or the origin of the Covid-19 virus, Doval said biological research and dual use of pathogens was a serious concern and had highlighted the need for bio security.
Dr Swaminathan said, “We have seen some 5 million deaths globally due to Covid-19, but the real death rate is much higher for every country. About 1.5 million children have been orphaned.”
Earlier, Dr RA Mashelkar, president, Pune International Centre, said disaster mitigation and prevention had to become an integral part of the national security policies. Ambassador Sudhir Devare opined that Covid-19 was now a foreign policy issue.
False info a bigger threat
Protecting people from false and motivated propaganda has become necessary in the age of information revolution. It should be part of national security planning. — Ajit Doval, National Security Adviser
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