Sunday, November 19

The Indian James Bond

Ajit Kumar Doval, the current national security adviser to PM Narendra Modi. Doval did not just cruise to the top. He worked hard for it and his fascinating story is worth a read. Here are 11 things you have to know about our very own agent 007, one of the best spies that India has produced:

1. He lived in Pakistan as a spy for 7 years and passed on vital information.

2. After he stopped being undercover, he worked in the Indian High Commission in Islamabad for 6 years.

3. Remember the infamous hijacking of IC-814 at Kandahar? His negotiation skills led to the hostages’ freedom.

4. In fact, he has successfully terminated 15 hijackings between 1971-1999.

5. As a field agent in 1986, he infiltrated the underground Mizo National Front, who were waging an insurgency against the Indian state. He detached its top leaders and forced them to settle for peace.

6. In the late ’80s, he went into the Golden Temple posing as a Pakistani agent to Khalistani militants inside and passed on vital information during Operation Black Thunder.

7. He persuaded hardcore Kashmiri militant Kuka Parray and his troops to become counter terrorists.

8. He is also credited to be the youngest police officer to get the Police Medal for meritorious service.

9. He played an important role in the secure return of 46 Indian nurses who were trapped in a region under control of ISIS.

10. He isn’t just a spymaster but a great strategist as well. He got the likes of Yasin Malik, Shabbir Shah, and even the hawkish pro-Pak SAS Geelani to the negotiating table.

11. He has been awarded India’s second highest peacetime gallantry award, Kirti Chakra.