This portal ( ) is now deprecated and not updated any longer.

Print Friendly

Internal Security for UPSC: National Security and Internal Security

National Security and its Elements

National Security is a state or condition where a nation’s most cherished values and beliefs, its way of life, its institutions of governance and its unity, welfare, and well-being as a Nation and people are permanently protected and continuously enhanced.

Its basic elements are as follows:

1.Socio-political stability– It has the following two components:

Maintenance of public order– Disturbed public order has a bearing on political stability and people blame the government for failing to maintain the public order and demand change in government.

Freedom from oppression and crime at the hands of certain people of the society.

2.Territorial Integrity – Nation should protect itself from all illegal intrusions and resource exploitation.

3.Economic Security – Nation to have a stable income or other sources to support a standard of living now and in the near future.

4.Environmental security – Effective conservation of natural environment in the face of industrial and agricultural expansion and population growth.

5.Energy security – To have access to cheap and renewable sources of energy.

6.Cultural cohesiveness

7.Moral and spiritual consensus – All People should have a national vision and a national pride.

Figure 1.1: Facets of National Security

Internal and External Security

The two aspects of National Security are Internal and External Security.  At the outset, it is important to understand the difference between them:

Internal Security

i).It is the security of the country from internal actors as well as foreign actors, within its boundaries

ii).Its maintenance is the sole responsibility of the State police, supported by Central police forces and armed forces.

iii).It falls under the purview of Ministry of Home Affairs

iv).Fighting from internal forces require an unconventional set of skills of warfare.

v).Police efforts for internal security maintenance may lead to issues of human rights violence as it often involves a war against our own people.

vi).Internal troubles are often a result of aggrieved Indian citizens because of an inequitable development process.

 External Security

i).It is the security of the country from aggression by a foreign country.


ii).Its maintenance is the sole responsibility of the armed forces.

iii).It falls under the purview of Ministry of Defence

iv).Fighting from external forces involves conventional warfare skills.

v).Human rights issues are generally neglected while fighting a war against foreign country.

vi).External troubles are often a result of boundary disputes or economic competition between two countries.



Kautilya classified the threats to a country into four categories:

  1. Internal
  2. External
  3. Internally aided External, e.g. when internal terror groups aid hostile nations like Pakistan.
  4. Externally aided Internal, e.g when hostile nations like China support the Maoists of the country.

Thank you 🙂

Lohit Matani is an Indian Police Service (IPS) Officer, serving in Maharastra Cadre. He has deep interest in, and specializes in Internal Security & Disaster Management. He is a published author and a blogger. You can reach him on Facebook or on his blog here or buy his book on Internal Secuity by clicking here.
Print Friendly

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • Lohit Matani


  • nrm007

    sir please provide solutions to prelims marathoon

  • ForumIAS


  • Bin2Boon

    Last one is just awesome i.e. Kautilya point highly recommended for Essay.
    Thank you

  • Just done with a couple of chapters.
    short and crisp approach .
    highly recommended .