As an email from the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) taunts intelligence agencies with the promise of future terrorist attacks--daring police to stop 18 bombs in Ahmedabad BEFORE they went off--it is beginning to appear that India is the proverbial soft target. Several critics, including the Home Minister, had already laid into the intelligence bureaus for working at cross purposes, withholding information from one another, and generally acting incompetently. And few (if any) investigations into the deadly terrorist attacks perpetrated on Indian soil over the past five years have yielded any results. Yes, the authorities announce that they see evidence of the tried and true "foreign hand," and level (apparently unfounded) accusations at Pakistan or Bangladesh, and round up the usual (Muslim) suspects for interrogation. But in the end, nothing comes from their efforts.
It's entirely possible that these cases are simply too difficult to solve. And certainly the last thing India needs is a draconian anti-terrorism law that the incompetent police can use to persecute minority groups. But one wonders whether recent efforts--like the FBI visit intended to share info about forensic investigation--will have any effect, and whether greater international cooperation, as well as a complete overhaul of the Indian intelligence services, are warranted.