Tuesday August 09, 2022

‘Concerted efforts required to fight terrorism’

By Our Correspondent
June 27, 2022

Islamabad : Former Inspector General of Police Dr Kaleem Imam has called for concerted efforts to fight terrorism in Pakistan.

Dr Imam was speaking at an event on ‘Terrorism and State response’ organised here by the Institute of Regional Studies

Dr Imam termed maintenance of law and order, prevention and detection of crime, provision of security, prosecution of criminals and countering organised crime as essential in a State’s response to terrorism. He shared that between 2017 and 2020, the law enforcement agencies (LEAs) in Pakistan conducted 375,000 intelligence-based operations (IBOs). Listing the achievements of Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad in 2020, he revealed that it resulted in the freezing of assets and check on the movement of members of 78 terrorist organisations and killing of 353 terrorists. He added that Pakistan had come down from 6th in the Crime Index Ranking to 106th as a result of all the successes of the government against terrorism.

He also listed the signing of the Paigham-i-Pakistan edict by 1,800 religious scholars as a success in countering religious extremism and promoting tolerance.

Dr Imam emphasised both hard and soft interventions for countering terrorism in Pakistan. In terms of soft responses, he called for participative political processes, dialogue, socio-economic development, and reform for countering terrorism and extremism. In terms of hard responses, he stressed the importance of modernisation of the LEAs, the formation of a rapid response force and formulation of a counter-terrorism department.

Commenting on the legal developments related to terrorism, he mentioned the Suppression of Terrorists Act 1975, Anti-Terrorism Act 1997, Regulations Action in Aid of Civil Powers 2011, Fair Trial Act 2013, Punjab Protection of Vulnerable Persons Rules 2015 and Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act 2016. Highlighting the importance of police action against terrorist organisations, the ex-IG cited the findings of a study conducted by the US Rand Corporation. He shared that the study had found out that 40% of terrorist groups had ended through joint police/intelligence operations.