ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan Monday vowed to track down the perpetrators of terrorist attack in Islamabad's district courts and bring them to justice.
At least 11 people, including additional sessions judge Rafaqat Awan, were killed and 29 others wounded earlier on Monday during a gun and bomb attack in a court in the capital city’s F-8 area.
“It is condemnable and a painful incident. We are investigating it from different angles and will reach to the bottom,” he said speaking on an adjournment motion in the National Assembly.
Nisar said, “The issue is not simple, because the attackers are from our ranks. When the enemy is out in front, it is easy to confront it. But, when it is hidden among us, it becomes very difficult.”
He presented some initial findings before the house, but stated that giving all findings might affect the investigation. The matter was also subjudice as the Islamabad High Court had taken a suo motu notice.
“Please wait for a few days. I shall come up with all details,” he said to the angry opposition members who earlier lambasted the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government for its failure to protect the federal capital.
They said the government should come out with a clear strategy to tackle the menace of terrorism.
The lower house of Parliament, which resumed its session with Sardar Ayaz Sadiq in the chair, suspended the agenda on the order of day to discuss terrorist attack on district courts Islamabad.
Initiating the debate, Leader of the Opposition Syed Khurshid Shah of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) regretted that the attack came hours after announcement of the ceasefire and that too on judiciary which he said ensures justice in the society.
The opposition leader said that Taliban should clearly condemn, disown and identify the groups involved in such heinous activities.
Sheikh Rohail Asghar of PML-N said that the previous government ignored the menace of terrorism but the present government is determined to address it once for all. He said Taliban will either have to own the responsibility or stop its factions from indulging in terrorism.
Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) MNA Shafqat Mahmood said there can be no improvement in the situation until and unless steps are taken to improve the governance. He said, "We are talking about creation of new security apparatus but are unable to improve performance of the existing security forces especially police.”
Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) lawmaker Dr Farooq Sattar said Islamabad attack is a clear message that fight against terror is war of survival for Pakistan.
He said Taliban have demonstrated their strength to attack anywhere in the country including the federal capital and it is now for the government to formulate a strategy to establish writ of the state. He said extortion money is being used to fund terrorist activities.
Awami Muslim League (AML) leader Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said the entire nation supported the option of dialogue but Islamabad attack is a clear message that outlawed TTP has no control over its factions despite claims made while announcing the ceasefire.
He said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif should head the government negotiating team and it is time “we all sit together to find a solution to the problem.”
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar said the police and civil military forces were required to be further trained for fighting the war against Taliban militants.
“They are prepared for conventional war. But, this situation is different. Therefore, we are training our civil military forces and the police.”
The minister appealed to the parliamentarians not to describe any such incident as failure of the government.
“This will encourage our opponents. Any scattered incident cannot be described as a failure as a whole. Our resolve is firm and we shall fight out terrorism with valour, consistency and commitment. Nobody should doubt it,” he said.