Editor, SAIR; Executive Director, ICM & SATP
Despite shrill assessments across the board and an enveloping sense of apprehension promoted by polarizing politics, the past year has been astonishingly peaceful in India in terms of terrorist and insurgent violence. Total terrorism/insurgency related fatalities across India at 772, are at a dramatic low – certainly the lowest since 1994, when the South Asia Terrorism Portal began maintaining datafor this category. Indeed, since 2012, total fatalities across the country have remained below the ‘high intensity conflict’ threshold of a thousand fatalities per year. It is useful to recall that fatalities remained above 2,000 for 18 of these 22 years; out of which they were above 3,000 for 11 years; above 4,000 for five years; and over 5,000 in 2001.
Indeed, in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) alone, fatalities remained above the critical ‘high intensity’ threshold from 1990 to 2006 – and had risen to 4,507 at peak in 2001.
Cumulative totals of the multiple insurgencies in India’s troubled Northeast, similarly, remained above the ‘high intensity’ threshold in 2007 and 2008, but have declined enormously since, with 273 killed in 2015.
The Left Wing insurgency saw a thousand-plus fatalities in just a single year, 2010, (at 1,180), which have declined continuously since, to 251 fatalities in 2015.