14 Dec : Faced with an "acute shortage" of manpower, India’s premier domestic snooping agency, the Intelligence Bureau (IB), will for the first time recruit non-commissioned officers (NCOs) from the Indian Air Force to fill up the vacancies.
"We have an acute shortage of manpower and to overcome the problem, we are recruiting over 3,000 personnel in the junior ranks. For the first time, we will take them from the IAF also," Home Ministry sources said.
Till now, the junior staff in the IB was drawn from the paramilitary and state police forces and other departments under the Home Ministry.The internal intelligence agency is recruiting IAF personnel primarily to utilise their knowledge in technology-driven areas and is planning to employ them to handle its modern intelligence-gathering equipment.
"With the IB acquiring new technological aids for intelligence gathering, these men, who have considerable experience in handling advanced equipment, will be used to handle our new gadgets," the sources said.
"With their training and discipline, it will take a shorter time for us to teach them the tricks of our trade than in the case of new recruits," they added.The recruited lot from the IAF, sources said, will be deployed at the Immigration Bureaus in the airports and sea-ports across the country.
"We have plans to augment the number of staff at the Immigration Bureaus and these NCOs will be deployed there too," sources said.Both serving and retired NCOs from IAF are being eyed by the IB as potential recruits.
"We are taking the serving personnel on deputation and recruiting ex-servicemen, who have around 20 years of service behind them," they said.Earlier only officers were recruited to the IB either on deputation or after retirement from their respective services.
Currently, the IB had about 7,000 field personnel for intelligence gathering. In order to strengthen its network across the country, the IB has recently started its recruitment drive, sources said.
Central intelligence agencies have been receiving flak from state governments for their failure in anticipating and preventing at least 18 major terror attacks in the country in the last two years that killed over 500 people and left over a thousand injured.