What is missing in our anti-terror policy?
INTERIOR Minister Ch Nisar Ali Khan, in a wide-ranging press con ference on Monday, dealt with the issue of terrorism and extremism in a comprehensive manner and vowed to defeat terrorism with the strong commitment of the nation. He pointed out that our security agencies have squeezed space from terrorists and that is why they are hitting soft targets.
Only pessimists would disagree with the Minister that the on-going operation against terrorists has made headways in different parts of the country and a marked improvement in security environment is visible. There is no denying the fact that the incidents of bomb blasts and suicide attacks have come down, which show the security and law-enforcing agencies have, besides eliminating terrorist networks, prevented such incidents. However, the nature of the problem is such that it would continue to haunt us for years to come and sustained efforts will have to be made both by the government and the people for the purpose. There is consensus that the use of power alone would not resolve the problem that has many dimensions and that is why a National Action Plan (NAP) was carved out through the collective will of the nation. Ch. Nisar Ali Khan would appreciate that there are genuine concerns about progress on all aspects of the NAP, so much needs to be done on different fronts especially the psychological aspect. The Minister himself has acknowledged that success would depend on winning the war on psychological front as well but progress in this regard seems to be very slow. Minds of people especially those of youth have been influenced by those behind the campaign of indoctrination and it is understood this phenomenon cannot be addressed just through military operations. Federal and Provincial Governments will have to join hands and support of all segments of the society especially religious scholars, media and opinion-makers will have to be enlisted for countering those propagating extremism, besides concentrating on the psychological rehabilitation of affected ones, on priority basis.