News Brief

'Jihadi', Communist Powers-Sponsored Terrorism Feature In New Course For BTech Students Pursuing MS Programme At JNU

Swarajya Staff

Aug 31, 2021, 12:49 PM | Updated 12:49 PM IST

Jawaharlal Nehru University  (Image: Ganga Sahay Meena via Wikimedia Commons)
Jawaharlal Nehru University (Image: Ganga Sahay Meena via Wikimedia Commons)

Delhi-based Jawaharlal Nehru University's Academic Council (AC) has approved an optional course on Counter-Terrorism, which asserts that "radical islamic states" have been influenced by the communist regimes in erstwhile Soviet Union and China.

The course, titled ‘Counter Terrorism, Asymmetric Conflicts and Strategies for Cooperation among Major Powers’, was cleared by the Academic Council, which is the highest decision making body of the varsity, during a meeting on 17 August. The council's clearance for the course will have to be endorsed by the Executive Council.

The new course will be offered to students pursuing an MS with specialisation in International Relations after a BTech in Engineering, reports Indian Express.

According to the report, one of the new course’s modules, titled ‘Fundamentalist-religious Terrorism and its Impact’, states: “Fundamentalist – religious inspired terrorism has played a very critical and dominant role in the spawning of terrorist violence in the beginning of the 21st century. The perverse interpretation of the Koran has resulted in the rapid proliferation of a jihadi cultist violence that glorifies death by terror in suicidal and homicidal variants.”

It further adds that the exploitation of the cyberspace by the "radical Islamic religious clerics has resulted in the electronic propagation of jihadi terrorism world over. Online electronic dissemination of Jihadi terrorism has resulted in the spurt of violence in non-Islamic societies that are secular and are now increasingly vulnerable to the violence that (is) on the increase.”

Another module of the new course, titled ‘State-sponsored Terrorism: It’s Influence and Impact’, refers to the state-sponsored terrorism by communist regimes such as erstwhile Soviet Union and China.

“Terrorism has always a geographical base and support havens for its operations. State sponsored terrorism has been largely during the ideological war between the West and the Soviet Union and China. The Soviet Union and China have been predominant state-sponsors of terrorism and they have been heavily involved in terms of their intelligence agencies training, aiding and providing logistical support to Communist ultras and terrorists,” the module states.

“In the post-Cold War period, the trend has been well adapted by several radical Islamic states that have mirrored the earlier tactical strategies of the Communist powers and have continued to aid and arm the various terrorist groups,” it states.

The course has been designed by Arvind Kumar, chairperson of the Centre for Canadian, US and Latin American Studies.

In response to a query on reference of only one religion in the module on "fundamentalist-religious terrorism", Kumar said it was “because Islamic terrorism is a world-accepted thing. After the Taliban, it has gained momentum now.”

Further, Kumar also defended the reference of Soviet Union and China as "predominant state-sponsors of terrorism”, saying that it was very difficult to define state-sponsored terrorism.

"We have to find evidence for it and only then we can include it," Kumar was quoted as saying.

Meanwhile, JNU Teacher’s Association has alleged that no discussion was allowed in the Academic Council meeting in which the course was passed.

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