Defence Intelligence Agency joins Black Money fight; focus on Terror Funds

DIA authorised to access financial intelligence from FIU; aims to curb hawala and terror financing. 

NEW DELHI: Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA), the intelligence agency under the Defence Ministry, has been authorised to get details relating to suspected international wire transfers and banking transactions from the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU).  It is also learnt that DIA is in discussions with DRDO Chief to set up a Defence FinTech R&D Arm (Advanced Research and Development in Financial Technologies) to focus on next generation research and development focussing on the Financial Technologies.

The move is aimed at arming the DIA with necessary details to act against terrorist funding and hawala transactions, mainly in Jammu and Kashmir and in the North Eastern states of the country, officials said on Sunday.

The DIA is expected to generate more action-oriented inputs to check financial crimes on the basis of analysis of FIU reports, the officials said.

The DIA, set up following the recommendations of the Kargil Committee and headed by eminent strategic expert K Subrahmanyam, provides technical inputs to the Defence Ministry and other agencies concerned.

The DIA is the latest entrant in the list of 20 other organisations, including the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team on black money and the country’s external and internal snooping agencies the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and the Intelligence Bureau (IB), respectively, that are empowered to seek details from the FIU on dubious financial transactions, according to an official order.

The FIU is tasked with collecting, analysing and disseminating information related to financial transactions suspected to involve black money or proceeds of crimes.

It receives and analyses cash transaction reports, cross border wire transfer reports, reports on purchase or sale of immovable property and suspicious transaction reports from various reporting entities.

The FIU also shares information with the Enforcement Directorate, Central Bureau of Investigation, Reserve Bank of India, Securities and Exchange Board of India, National Investigation Agency, Central Vigilance Commission, National Intelligence Grid, Central Economic Intelligence Bureau and other agencies.

According to the report of the Subrahmanyam panel, the defence intelligence effort in India was limited in relation to the role assigned to RAW, except for limited tactical and signal intelligence.

“The resources made available to the defence services for intelligence collection are not commensurate with the responsibility assigned to them. There are distinct advantages in having two lines of intelligence collection and reporting, with a rational division of functions, responsibilities and areas of specialisation. The Committee is of the view that the issue of setting up an integrated defence intelligence agency needs examination,” it had said. This recommendation led to the establishment of DIA.

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