Map Courtesy/ EU DisinfoLab. In 2019, the Lab uncovered a vast network of 265 coordinated fake local media outlets in 65 countries serving Indian interests, as well as multiple dubious think tanks and NGOs. It is a 15-year operation targeting the EU and UN to serve Indian (ruling class) interests, with the purpose of grossly misrepresenting China and Pakistan. The EU DisinfoLab , led by Gary Machado and Alexandre Alaphilippe et al, that normally covered EU agencies, took up the South Asian affairs as European news media and other entities like EU parliament were being used extensively for disinformation by Indian agencies. The Lab issued an updated version recently in Feb 2023; by that time it grew enormously with around 750 outlets. “There is no such thing as good disinformation, we are convinced” say the authors of the Report.
This is Part-2 of an article on India’s media relations with China published in countercurrents.org, June 24,2023, with the caption:
Part-2 is focused on India’s disinformation campaign, targeting China and Pakistan, and should be viewed together with curbing India’s own direct media presence in China, and then retaliation by China as India relentlessly pursued its scheme. This was discussed in Part-1 of this article, which noted:
“the downward spiral began in 2016 (i.e., long before Galwan clash), and became exacerbated in 2020.” India has not approved visas since 2020, leading to a drop of Chinese journalists from 14 to one.”
scroll.in, Jun 11, 2023, reported it was indeed a case of Tit-for-tat expulsions: “ Beijing’s revocation in recent months of the accreditations of three Indian correspondents and decision to freeze the visas of two, effectively barring them from returning to China to work, comes in retaliation to Delhi’s measures against Chinese state media journalists. China has also reportedly threatened counter-measures against the last Indian accredited reporter in Beijing if the visa of the last Chinese correspondent in India is not renewed.” China is reportedly demanding that India must provide Chinese journalists year-long visas instead of the three-month permits they had been receiving.
Former ambassador to China and former foreign secretary Nirupama Rao tweeted : “This is the worst time I’ve seen in my living memory in India-China relations. And I’m not exaggerating. It’s serious .” Indian journalists were present in Beijing even during the 1962 war. But not now in this modern era of information revolution.
Thus, in effect, by shunning self-reliance (atma nirbharta), India ‘outsourced’ news coverage about China to the West, and itself is busy in disinformation aimed at China and Pakistan. This redoubles the effect of venomous media coverage, undermining and straining our relations with our neighbors, and that vitiates peace in the region.
The disinformation campaign is one of the most important and major sources of India’s Mainstream Media (MSM) that is dominated by almost daily tirades against China and Pakistan; and that is one of the major components of ‘foreign’ news in India.
EU DisinfoLab, usually focused on EU, clarified: “At first, we never intended to work on South-Asia related matters; it all began when we read a publication by the European External Action Service (EEAS).” Evidently it was started in 2005, i.e., soon after the arrival of Congress-led UPA regime, but far advanced by BJP-led Modi dispensation.
Reputed academic bodies like Princeton University Library keep the EU DisinfoLab Reports.
“There is no such thing as good disinformation, we are convinced” says the report which in its Foreword said:
“Throughout this investigation, we have been astonished by the multiplication of layers of fake, something we had never encountered in other investigations.
“ The actors behind this operation highjacked the names of others, tried to impersonate regular media and press agencies such as the EU Observer, the Economist and Voice of America, used the letterhead of the European Parliament, registered websites under avatars with fake phone numbers, provided fake addresses to the United Nations, created publishing companies to print books of the think-tanks they owned.
“ They organised supposedly multi-stakeholder events where – in essence – everyone speaking were tied to “Indian Chronicles”. They misappropriated the picture of a former UK Government Minister and BBC Director on Facebook, registered the names of deceased persons to attend events five years after their death, invented dozens of journalist identities. They used layers of fake media that would quote and republish one another. They used politicians who genuinely wanted to defend women or minority rights to ultimately serve geopolitical interests and gave a platform to far-right politicians when convergent objectives could be reached.
“ We believe this astounding level of fakery is the reason why the operation could last for so long: how can a human being suspect or imagine that this is possible?
Even our full report does not mention everything we uncovered, and it is with regret, but for the sake of legibility, that we had to leave aside many other fakes.”
‘Foreign’ news : Silence on US war crimes and tirades against China and Pakistan
Foreign affairs and foreign policy news in India’s Mainstream Media (MSM) is dominated by almost daily tirades against China and Pakistan, by making false allegations that they are collaborating and conspiring against India, promoting terrorism, border violations, and by painting that they are a threat to peace in the region and all over the world.
The MSM almost never tells you how USA maintains for decades hundreds of military bases across the world, and how it killed millions of civilians in wars it waged and promoted across the world, more so in Third World, and Asia in particular. And never tells of the crimes of US’ allies among European imperialist powers. But sees a threat in China that has an LAC with India where admittedly not a single bullet was fired for six decades, and even in a weakened and crippled Pakistan. Such a threat perception, artificially created, is shown as a ‘cause’ for a huge, purposeless and scam-ridden Defence Budget of over Rs. 7 lakh crore yearly.
This article focuses on how such news is “manufactured” – to borrow Noam Chomsky’s classic usage- by an amazing network created by the Indian Establishment, and disseminated widely by the Indian MSM, including reputed news papers and portals, online and offline. The above map sums up how it has been going since 2005, and the Operation is more vicious – increasingly so – today than ever. They call it quite common in ‘Statecraft,’ may be so, but there is notably more disinformation than information, particularly by the USA and India, the unique ‘democratic allies’ that are highlighted, as never before, during the latest Prime Minister Modi’s visit to USA.
Now Modi is among the world’s most popular leaders, we are told, and a great visionary. Under him, India is becoming a Vishwa guru. Its another matter that a recent PEW survey said 40% American adults said they never heard Modi’s name. Out of those who knew his name, a major section said they do not approve his views. Widespread questioning and protests in USA against Modi were highly under-played in India.
ANI, a major source of disinformation splashed across India
The report said ANI is an Indian news agency (do read the Appendix) that plays a relevant role in the country’s information ecosystem, providing content (disinformation) for many well-established media across India, such as The Print, Business Standard, Times Group including Economic Times, and Business Standard., and scores of news TV channels like Wion, Republic TV, ZeeTV, TV -9, that have outlets across India and in many Indian languages too.
No wonder most of them, based on organized disinformation, simultaneously air similar or same tirade against China, Pakistan, often bracketing them together, adding ‘credibility’ to disinformation. In fact that is the staple source for ‘foreign’ news they can’t afford otherwise. With this vast network, ANI acts as a purveyor of news to tens of millions of Indians.
Often some of the reputed the media outlets publish disclaimers, saying they did no more than adding a title to the reports from a ‘feeder’, and wash their hands.
This report was largely ignored by MSM; an earlier edition of 2019 was covered by very few – online media like scroll.in Nov 14, 2019, and Caravan, Dec 9, 2020, and latest edition by thewire.in, and sabrangindia.in (Feb 23-24,2023).
It is natural that China and Pakistan that have been targeted take note of this, and China’s Global Times came out with a report, Jun 20, 2023: GT investigates: How Indian media fabricates think tanks, journalists to churn out anti-China, Pakistan news. It says:
“ Following reports in 2019 and 2020, the latest investigation report by independent non-profit organization EU DisinfoLab, published in February 2023, exposes more details and evidences to prove that Asian News International (ANI), an Indian news agency, has been quoting a number of non-existent organizations, journalists and bloggers to spread disinformation that attacks and smears China and Pakistan.
“The report further uncovered that India has long been building a huge anti-China and anti-Pakistan disinformation network and that Indian media outlets have built a sophisticated assembly line of fake anti-China and anti-Pakistan news.
” On the one hand, the Indian media produces and spreads false narratives about China, and on the other hand, the Indian government restricts Chinese journalists’ access to India and deny their rights of reporting a real India, by treating Chinese journalists in an unfair and discriminatory manner during their posting in India and visa application process.
“Chinese experts said the investigation report exposes a deliberate effort by India or Indian media to shape negative narratives against China and Pakistan. The presence of such disinformation campaign aligns with India’s strained relations with both countries. They pointed out that the production of fake news by Indian media can incite nationalist sentiment within the country and distract people from the real problems of the country and the poor performance of its government.
“Within the complex geopolitical context of South Asia, such disinformation campaigns can have far-reaching consequences, which can exacerbate tensions, strain diplomatic relations, and hinder regional cooperation efforts, observers warned.”
“Bad Sources – How Indian news agency ANI quoted sources that do not exist”
Source: EU DisinfoLab 2023 report. Note details like750 fake media outlets etc. Enormous growth seen since 2019.
The investigation report with the above title, published by EU DisinfoLab, unveils “its latest investigation into anti-Pakistan/China influence operations;” they are meant to manufacture reports that seek to undermine and discredit China and Pakistan, create bad blood, and strain relations with them.
Alleged minority persecution in Pakistan and China, LoC LAC ‘stories’, Wolf-warrior diplomacy of China, China-Pakistan collaboration and conspiracies through BRI etc against India are among pet themes of disinformation.
ANI has been repeatedly quoting articles and reports issued by a think tank named the International Forum for Rights and Security (IFFRAS), that was previously chaired by Mario Silva, a former Canadian Member of Parliament (MP). IFFRAS was dissolved in 2014, as per a Canadian government website. However, IFFRAS’ official website, presumably hijacked, has kept updating information, including articles, news, books and even conferences, and ANI has kept quoting information from that.
For example, on December 27, 2022, IFFRAS published an article titled “Pakistan’s persecution of minorities under scanner again,” and on the same day, the article was quoted by ANI in a piece of news headlined “Pakistan’s ill-treatment of minorities under scanner after UK sanctions Sindhi cleric,” with most of the contents coming from the IFFRAS article.
Another think tank frequently quoted by ANI is the Policy Research Group (POREG). However, three of its members quoted by ANI numerous times, on topics such as Pakistan’s army doctrines and so-called China’s “wolf warrior diplomacy,” were never available or reachable, according to the investigation report.
So also failed efforts to contact Philippe Jeune, a claimed “Paris-based investigative journo with more than 10 years’ experience” and sometimes a claimed “Brussels-based freelance journalist,” who was quoted by ANI in a piece of news entitled “European Parliament to withdraw Pakistan’s GSP+ status over abuse of blasphemy laws” – a withdrawal that did not happen.
Asif Noor, founder of the Friends of BRI Forum, a Pakistan-based think tank, said that by attributing statements and opinions to these fictional entities, ANI creates a false impression of legitimacy and credibility for the disinformation being spread.
Fake media, NGOs, dead and fabricated figures projected as ‘reliable sources’ and ‘experts’
Source: EU DisinfoLab.
The report says:
‘Members of our team all share a common trait: an eye for the fake and a drive to uncover it. But never before in our investigations have we been so astonished at the multiplication of layers of fake. Indian Chronicles resurrected dead media, dead think-tanks and NGOs. It even resurrected dead people. These fabricated figures are used as experts to provide opinions and analysis to further mislead readers and reinforce the false narratives.
The vast network of fake media outlets, think tanks and (around 10) NGOs serving Indian interests the Report uncovered in 2019 took a hit, but it’s still around. EP Today (Europe Parliament) is gone, but it now lives through the 2020-born EU Chronicle, an opaque, self-proclaimed Brussels-based independent media. The report adds:
“Moreover, we uncovered how, for 15 years, the UN Human Rights Council has been abused by a network of coordinated NGOs serving Indian interests. (So) we decided to reopen our investigation, and named it “Indian Chronicles”.
EU DisinfoLab took a deeper dive, with a specific focus on the Commission to Study the Organization of Peace (CSOP), seen above.
Its former Chairman and “grandfather of international law in the US”, Louis B. Sohn, who passed away in 2006, seemingly attended a UN Human Rights Council meeting in 2007 and participated in an event organised by “Friends of Gilgit-Baltistan” in Washington D.C. in 2011! The Lab Report was dedicated to the memory of Sohn.
“ We soon realised that this US-based NGO – accredited to the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) – had become inactive in the late 1970s before being resurrected in 2005. Its identity had been hijacked by the same (Indian) actors depicted in our first investigation. Shockingly, we discovered that the organisation had not only been revived
Says the report: “From then on, we uncovered an entire network of coordinated UN-accredited NGOs promoting Indian interests and criticizing Pakistan (and China of course, often bracketing them together) repeatedly. We could tie at least 10 of them directly to the Srivastava family, with several other dubious NGOs pushing the same messages.
“ These UN-accredited NGOs work in coordination with non-accredited think-tanks and minority-rights NGOs in Brussels and Geneva. Several of them – like the European Organization for Pakistani Minorities (EOPM), Baluchistan House and the South Asia Democratic Forum (SADF) – were directly but opaquely created by the Srivastava group.
In Geneva, these think-tanks and NGOs are in charge of lobbying, organising demonstrations and speaking during press conferences and UN side-events. They were repeatedly given the floor at the UN on behalf of the accredited organizations.” Similar are three informal groups in the European Parliament, namely the “South Asia Peace Forum”, the Baloch Forum” and “Friends of Gilgit- Baltistan, ..organisations like WESTT – the Women Economic and Social Think-Tank..”These served as a honeypot to attract a growing number of MEPs into a pro-India and anti-Pakistan discourse, often using causes such as minorities rights and women’s rights as an entry point.”
The Disinformation undermines credibility of the Indian media.
India’s rank on World Press Freedom Index drops to 161 out of 180 countries. Among its neighbours, India is ranked below Pakistan (150th), Afghanistan (152nd), Sri Lanka (135th) and Nepal (95th).
Professors Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky in their classic “Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media” (1988) exposed in great forensic detail how US Mainstream media (MSM) operate as propaganda agents for US governments.” (countercurrents.org, June 26,2021)
CIA Mossad and the like are role-models to the Indian entities which excelled the pioneers of disinformation, with their own ‘manufactures’.
The modus operandi
The investigation looks into a number of non-existent organisations, bloggers and journalists who are regularly quoted by Asian News International (ANI). Eg. ANI has been repeatedly quoting a think tank that was dissolved in 2014 and therefore no longer exists. Fake personae, self-described as James Bond fans, basketball players and management consultants, became geopolitical experts quoted by ANI numerous times on topics such as Pakistan’s army doctrines and China’s ‘wolf warrior diplomacy’.
Then the report gave the modus operandi, with several specific examples:
To find out who was attending conferences held by IFFRAS, researchers contacted attendees of a session discussing the “Increasing presence of Muslim Brotherhood.” But two of the attendees mentioned by IFFRAS responded that they had never attended such a conference and that the Muslim Brotherhood “had nothing (to do) with their field of expertise.”
“The DisinfoLab report described how fake media websites and NGOs run by the Srivastava group lobbied members of the European parliament, or MEPs, to write op-eds taking pro-India stances, often against Pakistan or China, which were then published on the group’s dummy news websites. ANI then quoted these as credible reports from European media, from where Indian media and news channels reproduced and disseminated them, unchecked.” (the Caravan)
The big copy/paste network: Part of Indian Chronicles’ dissemination operations now revolve around the Big News Network, a self-proclaimed “news agency” owning hundreds of media outlets…To summarize, a simple letter by individual MEPs, who are free to send any letter they want to send, is ultimately presented as an official position of the EU on China.
One example that the report cited concerned surgical strikes by the Indian Army in Pakistan, ahead of the 2019 general elections. EP Today, a dummy website run by the Srivastava group, published an op-ed by Ryszard Czarnecki, a member of the European parliament, in support of the strikes. ANI then reproduced this opinion, but with a crucial twist—it claimed this to be the EU’s official statement, announcing its support of Modi. This disinformation was then reported by other Indian outlets reaching millions of Indians.
Members of European Union Parliamentary delegation during a shikara ride at Dal Lake in Srinagar on October 30, 2019 | PTI (See also scroll.in report below.)
The DisinfoLab found that a majority of the content published by the EU Chronicle was copying press releases or reports that seemed like they had been written by bots. Despite its limited presence, it has published multiple articles by Czarnecki and Martusciello. All three—Mariani, Czarnecki and Martusciello—were among the MEPs who visited Kashmir.
The Report also found that for 15 years, organisations connected to the Srivastava group had been making representations at the Council for Human Rights, at the United Nations, primarily undermining Pakistan. According to the report, organisations connected to the Srivastava group even “resurrected” dead people and dead NGOs—that is, used their names and identities—to create an air of credibility around themselves.
Such activities using UN fora presumably need some kind of official backing.
scroll.in , Nov 14, 2019 reported: The little-known organisation that allegedly sponsored the Kashmir visit of the unofficial European Union delegation last month is linked to an international fake news network managed by an “Indian influence network”. The EU-based non-governmental organisation EU DisinfoLab claimed this, and gave some details. ( https://scroll.in/latest/943651/group-that-sponsored-meps-travel-to-j-k-linked-to-india-based-global-fake-news-lobby-network-ngo)
“Indian influence network”: linked to Indian intelligence services?
At the UNHRC, Geneva-based students and Pakistan minorities representatives speak on behalf of the WERC, mostly to promote India and discredit Pakistan. The WERC even organised UN side events on “Peace and Security” and “Human Rights in Pakistan”. At the UNHRC in 2018, the Word Sindhi Congress, speaking on behalf of WERC, opposed the construction of a dam in Pakistan. This was covered by ANI both in an article and on Twitter.
The prime players of disinformation: ANI and a ‘shadowy business conglomerate’
“ Among the prime players of this disinformation campaign are Asian News International, India’s largest video news agency, and the Srivastava group—a shadowy business conglomerate that came into the spotlight in India after it organised a visit to Kashmir (see photo ) for far-right members of the European Parliament, in late 2019. The report, titled “Indian Chronicles,” is based on a year-long investigation by the NGO, which was built upon and published exclusively by news organisations such as Les Jours in France.” (THE CARAVAN, 09 December 2020)
When asked about whether the report had proof of ANI working directly with the Srivastava companies, AlexandreAlaphilippe, the director of DisinfoLab, wrote that he had “no comment,” before adding: “But I encourage you to look at these facts: EU Chronicle set up on 6th May. 11th May already 3 op-eds from 3 MEPs. On 12th May, ANI quotes EU Chronicle as an independent media and reliable source.”
Role of Indian intelligence services
The (French) Les Jours report shows how the Indian lobby gets European politicians to support Indian foreign interests. Julie Ward, a British member of the European parliament, was approached by Madi Sharma, a lobbyist, to cosign articles for EP Today on women’s rights in Saudi Arabia. (Sharma was among the organisers of the Kashmir visit.) Ward was embarassed later, and said: “Then I was asked to co-sign a column on human-rights violations in Balochistan”—in Pakistan—“which made me uncomfortable, it seemed very biased…”
The Les Jours report suggests that Indian intelligence services could be behind the Srivastava group’s misinformation operations. It cited various examples to justify this claim…Eg. Pramila Srivastava, a board member of the group and wife of the group’s founder, threatened a pediatrician for speaking about infanticide in Punjab in the UN Human Rights Commission. Pramila responded to the doctor’s presentation saying it would create “a false image of India,” and that doctor would have to “assume the consequences.” The pediatrician was questioned by the Indian intelligence services on her return to the country.
Les Jours noted that a company run by Ankur Srivastava, also of the Srivastava family, makes malware which he said is only sold to Indian intelligence services. It also noted that the Srivastava group runs several fake news websites including Socialist Weekly, Khalsa Akhbar Lahore and the Times of Azad Kashmir, which are likely linked to Indian intelligence services.
The 2020 DisinfoLab report also points to how NGOs and freshly restored international organisations linked to the Srivastava network worked as a lobby in the UN Human Rights Commission to whitewash state-led Indian atrocities and highlight violence in Pakistan. The DisinfoLab identified at least ten NGOs as part of the Indian disinformation network. Such a role at UN needs to official support.
“ANI remains the only press agency to extensively cover the activities of dubious NGOs in Geneva,” the DisinfoLab report says, describing the agency’s work as “distortion.” Quenel, one of the Les Jours reporters, described an instance where ANI seemed fully aware that it was misreporting news from NGOs in Geneva. In September, a man called Lakhu Luhana spoke at the UNHRC, representing World Environment and Resources Council (WERC) – an organisation that disappeared in the 1980s, but was resurrected to serve Indian strategic interests like the CSOP and the CIPCC.
The Les Jours report notes that in 2019, Mariani also went to Geneva on the invitation of the South Asia Democratic Forum—a Brussels-based think tank. The SADF was created in 2011 by Paulo Casaca, a former MEP, and is domiciled in Brussels at the same address as an office of an organisation linked to the Srivastava group. The domain name of the think tank was also registered directly by the Indian company. In September 2019, SADF sent Mariani by plane to Geneva, in business class, and paid for two nights at the luxurious Beaurivage hotel. All this, in order to attend a press conference on Jammu and Kashmir, organised by the think tank—an event, Quenel noted, “that was covered by the media of the Srivastava group, and by the ANI.”
This was a unique one…
though disinformation “has been part of the playbook of all countries,” Alaphilippe (Director of the Lab) said and added:
“In our past studies, we never encountered such a coordination between different stakeholders,” Alaphilippe said. “The fact, that during 15 years, and even after being partially exposed last year, this operation is able to keep its activities shows the sophistication and the willingness of the actors behind Indian Chronicles.
“It is definitely the biggest network we’ve exposed.. Just imagine if the same operation would have been carried out by China or Russia. What would have been the headlines of the media?”
EU DisinfoLab made recommendations
to the policymakers, that include: “We are alarmed to see the continuation of Indian Chronicles which – despite our first report and wide press coverage – has pursued its 15-year long operation and even recently launched EU Chronicle, a fake EU outlet. This should serve as a call to action for decision-makers to put in place a relevant framework to sanction actors engaging in disinformation and abusing international institutions. It is possible that the absence of messages from the institutions affected by Indian Chronicles provided the space and opportunity for the operation to reinvent itself and to continue doing “more of the same”.
The Director called for action from EU bodies saying that “the biggest failure from institutions would be if another report is released next year on the same actors with the same techniques. This would mean that EU institutions … are OK with foreign interferences.”
As to India, it should be noted that even in media there is no self-reliance, and that adversely affects Track-2 diplomacy, which is linked to media relations. Indians should know and be conscious that the venomous news (increasingly outsourced to the western sources) coupled with the disinformation barrage, against China and Pakistan, in no way benefit the cause of truth or peace. Nor they benefit the growing trade relations with China that are mutually beneficial and also useful to Indian businesses as well as consumers.
Given the scale of sustained disinformation, anything against China and Pakistan, particularly in the Anglo-saxon media, needs to be taken, not with the proverbial pinch of salt but with a ton of it.
Appendix: ANI, Smitha Prakash and Indian Establishment
For a Modi who harps against hereditary and ‘parivar’ politics, this disinformation-media story of three generations and two families (the other is Srivastavas) is noteworthy.
Smita Prakash, the rare journalist who could interview PM Modi, heads Asian News International (ANI), that has a history worth knowing, particularly for this article on Disinformation. ANI was the first agency in India to syndicate video news and is, as of 2019, the biggest TV news agency in India. Initially called TVNF, India’s first television news feature agency, it was established in 1971 during Indira Gandhi times. Its founder Prem Prakash was always close to the Establishment; it had produced numerous films for Doordarshan, showcasing a positive image of India, and went on to gain a monopoly in the sector.
Prem’s son Sanjiv succeeded him and he married Smita Prakash, who had joined ANI around 1986. She being the daughter of Inna Ramamohan Rao, former director of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, the ‘double-engine’ relations immensely furthered ANI’s access within the government, and thus across the world. In 1993, Reuters purchased a stake in ANI, and it was allowed to exert a complete monopoly over their India feed. Smitha did many stories for NPR News America and NHK Japan. Thus ANI’s INTERNATIONAL clout grew enormously.
Post-2000, the era of private TV channels, now in hundreds, arrived, and that provided scope for massive expansion of ANI’s video-production capacities. As most channels would/could not invest much capital, ANI became a syndicated feeder with visuals for most of them, and had a meteoric rise. Asian Films TV was incorporated in 2000 to provide feed for newspapers and periodicals. The Caravan notes that most of its foot-soldiers were low-cost recruits, who had little to do with journalism.
It became close to UPA and later NDA, and Smitha accompanied the PMs to US in official visits. UNI was a close competitor, but ANI emerged stronger as Ishaan Prakash, Smita’s son, joined the company in 2011, procured multiple units of LiveU entered into contracts with multiple state governments and union ministries, and expanded ANI’s overseas bureaus: By late 2011, ANI accounted for about 99% of the Reuters feed. ANI became as a propaganda tool of the incumbent union governments, and acquired a dubious official aura.
ANI grew even closer to the government after BJP assumed power in 2014, sympathetically covering the BJP and being highly confrontational, with opposition parties.
No wonder ANI became a biggest source of disinformation, with close connections to the Indian establishment, and thus to NSA Ajit Doval who had headed RAW, a premier foreign intelligence agency.
(Appendix based on Wikipedia)
Read part-1 here:
(The author is an independent media observer and political analyst who frequently contributed to the distinguished countercurrents.org.)