In 1909, the Indian Political Intelligence Office was established in England in response to the development of Indian anarchist activities, which came to be called the Indian Political Intelligence (IPI) from 1921. This was a state-run surveillance and monitoring agency. The IPI was run jointly by the India Office and the Government of India and reported jointly to the Secretary of the Public and Judicial Department of the India Office, and the Director of Intelligence Bureau (DIB) in India, and maintained close contact with Scotland Yard and MI5.
Shrouded in secrecy, the IB is used to garner intelligence from within India and also execute counter-intelligence and counter-terrorism tasks. The Bureau comprises employees from law enforcement agencies, mostly from the Indian Police Service (IPS) and the military. However, the Director of Intelligence Bureau (DIB) has always been an IPS officer except A. S. Dulat who was an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer. In addition to domestic intelligence responsibilities, the IB is particularly tasked with intelligence collection in border areas, following the 1951 recommendations of the Himmatsinhji Committee (also known as the North and North-East Border Committee), a task entrusted to military intelligence organizations prior to independence in 1947. All spheres of human activity within India and in the neighborhood are allocated to the charter of duties of the Intelligence Bureau. The IB was also tasked with other external intelligence responsibilities as of 1951 until 1968, when the Research and Analysis Wing was formed. The current chief of the organization is Nehchal Sandhu.
Understanding of the arcane workings of the IB is largely speculative. Many a times even their own family members are unaware of their whereabouts. One known task of the IB is to clear licenses to amateur radio enthusiasts. The IB also passes on intelligence between other Indian intelligence agencies and the police. The Bureau also grants the necessary security clearances to Indian diplomats and judges before they take the oath. On rare occasions, IB officers interact with the media during a crisis situation. The IB is also rumoured to intercept and open around 6,000 letters daily. It also has an email spying system similar to FBI's Carnivore system. The Bureau is also authorized to conduct wiretapping without a warrant.
The Class 1 (Gazetted) officers carry out coordination and higher-level management of the IB. Subsidiary Intelligence Bureaus (SIBs) are headed by officers of the rank of Joint Director or above, but smaller SIBs are also sometimes headed by Deputy Directors. The SIBs have their units at district headquarters headed by Deputy Central Intelligence Officers (DCIOs). The IB maintains a large number of field units and headquarters (which are under the control of Joint or Deputy Directors). It is through these offices and the intricate process of deputation that a very organic linkage between the state police agencies and the IB is maintained. In addition to these, at the national level the IB has several units (in some cases SIBs) to keep track of issues like terrorism, counter-intelligence, VIP security, threat assessment and sensitive areas (i.e. Jammu and Kashmir and such). IB officers (like their counterparts in R&AW ) get monthly special pays and an extra one-month salary every year, as well as better promotions. Apart from the IPS and IAS, IB also recruits from the Indian Revenue Service (IRS).
IB was created on 23 December 1887, by the then British Secretary of State as a sub-sect of the Central Special Branch but there is no act of the Indian parliament nor executive order relating to the functioning of the IB. In 2012, a PIL was filed challenging the legality of IB.
Peace and harmony are essential pre-requisites for development and blossoming of individual as well as social aspirations and building a strong and prosperous nation. To this end, it is envisaged that the Ministry of Home Affairs will strive to:
Eliminate threats to internal security including militancy, insurgency and terrorism
Preserve, protect and promote social harmony
Enforce the rule of law and provide timely justice
Provide the society an environment free from crime
Uphold the principles of human rights
Mitigate the sufferings resulting from natural and man-made disasters.
About Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA)
Ministry of Home Affairs extends manpower and financial support, guidance and expertise to the State Governments for the maintenance of security, peace and harmony without trampling upon the constitutional rights of the States.
Under the Government of India (Allocation of Business) Rules, 1961, the Ministry of Home Affairs has the following constituent Departments:-
Department of Border Management
Department of Home
Department of Internal Security
Department of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) Affairs
Department of Official Language
Department of States
Divisions of the Ministry of Home Affairs, indicating major areas of their responsibility, are as follows:
Border Management Division
Disaster Management Division
Freedom Fighters & Rehabilitation Division
Human Rights Division
Internal Security-I Division
Internal Security-II Division
Jammu & Kashmir Division
North East Division
Naxal Management Division
Police Modernisation Division
Policy Planning Division