Assailants came from Afghanistan, PM told

Published October 26, 2016
PRIME Minister Nawaz Sharif and Chief of the Army Staff Gen Raheel Sharif inquiring after the health of an injured cadet at the Sandeman Civil Hospital on Tuesday.—APP
PRIME Minister Nawaz Sharif and Chief of the Army Staff Gen Raheel Sharif inquiring after the health of an injured cadet at the Sandeman Civil Hospital on Tuesday.—APP

QUETTA: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan and Army Chief Gen Raheel Sharif were among the senior government and military functionaries who rushed to the provincial capital as soon as horrors of the devastating attack on the Police Training College, Quetta, became evident on Tuesday.

During the course of the day, they attended the funeral of those killed in the terrorist attack and visited hospital to inquire after the injured.

According to sources, however, the most worthwhile engagement of the day was a meeting at which they discussed the attack, its implications and the implementation of the National Action Plan (NAP) as well as a plan aimed at making Quetta a safe city.

At the meeting, which was also attended by Balochistan Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri, National Security Adviser retired Lt Gen Nasser Janjua, Commander of Southern Command Lt Gen Aamir Riaz, Home Minister Sarfaraz Ahmed Bugti and others, several important decisions were taken.

At the meeting, the prime minister also expressed concern over the authorities’ failure to make Quetta safe despite formulation of a well-thought out plan.

The heads of security and law enforcement agencies attending the meeting briefed the prime minister on the attack on the police training college.

The meeting was informed that adequate security measures had not been taken at the police training college, even though there were prior intelligence reports that security personnel could be attacked soon, the sources said.

The meeting was informed that the assailants had come from Afghanistan and were in contact with their handlers in the neighbouring country.

At this, the prime minister said the issue would be taken up with Afghanistan.

According to the sources, Prime Minister Sharif asked the officials concerned why the Quetta Safe City plan had not been fully enforced despite passage of considerable time since its preparation.

He said the federal government would have provided additional funds to the province had it been informed earlier that lack of funding had stalled its implementation.

Prime Minister Sharif, Gen Raheel Sharif and Chaudhry Nisar visited the Sandeman Civil Hospital to inquire after the health of police cadets injured in the terrorist attack. Balochistan Governor Mohammad Khan Achakzai and other officials were with them.

They visited the bed of every injured cadet.

They were informed that cadets in need of surgical operations had already been operated upon. The prime minister asked the doctors to take good care of the cadets.

Gen Sharif also visited the training college along with senior army officials. He met the military and police personnel who took part in the operation launched to clear the college of terrorists.

The army chief announced that Tamgha-i-Jurrat would be given to Captain Roohullah and Tamgha-i-Basalat to Naib Subedar Mohammad Ali.

They laid down their lives after neutralising one suicide bomber and cornering another, the ISPR said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Zehri asked Balochistan’s inspector general of police to carry out an investigation into the attack and submit a report in 24 hours.

Published in Dawn, October 26th, 2016

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