Alarmed by the growing influence of China in the Northeast and overt or covert support to terrorist activities by other neighbouring countries, the Research and Analysis (RAW) has embarked upon hiring border language experts to strengthen its intelligence network in these sensitive areas.
Regular intelligence officers suffer from a language barrier and cannot interact with the local populace or informants who speak only in their mother tongue. Hence RAW will recruit a large but unspecified number of language experts, research officers, field officers and interpreters in several languages spoken in the neighbouring countries, sources said.
Experts in Bodo, Nagamese, Chinese Cantonese and Chinese Mandarin languages would be posted as field officers and interpreters.
Similarly, the growing influence of Nepal-based Maoists in Indian affairs has forced the premier intelligence agency to hire specialists in Nepalese language. To further strengthen the existing network in J&K, more specialists in Urdu, Arabic and Kashmiri language are also being roped in.
Specialists in Sinhala and Turkish were being sought to monitor the international drug and arms running mafia which has been active in the region for the past two decades, the sources further revealed. The language experts would help the agency in studying, decoding and translating sensitive documents and internet or telephonic interceptions of the suspects being questioned, they said.