THE phenomenon of violent extremism has been increasing across the globe, and Pakistan is no exception on this count. The country has been experiencing violence for the last three to four decades, influenced by extremism from militant organisations of religious and ethnic thoughts.

The most recent suicidal attack on the faculty members of the Confucius Institute at the University of Karachi has gained nationwide concern primarily due to the fact that it was the first of its kind act involving a woman, and it took place in the largest city of Pakistan and the apparent motivation was neither poverty nor illiteracy. Rather the woman suicide attacker was identified as highly qualified.

There have been academic deliberations over what sort of energies people spend towards violent extremist activities.

There are levels of such motivation, including the macro-, meso- and micro-level drivers. The broad socio-economic-political trends of a nation, the identity groups, and individual factors, such as individual weaknesses, social isolation, or sensitivity to radical chronicles, are all responsible for the disorder that results in mishaps like the one that occurred at the Karachi University.

The concept of counter-violent extremism was introduced after the terrorist attacks in Madrid and London in 2014. However, there is no globally accepted and outlined parameters of it yet.

The usage of means to deter individuals or groups from mobilising towards violence and to alleviate facilitation may serve the purpose.

The strengthening of the pliability of individuals and communities against radicalisation and extremism may surely be a catalysing factor and the Karachi University, along with the betterment of security affairs, should use the infrastructure, like classrooms, labs and playgrounds, as well as trained human resources in the shape of the faculty to play a vital role in training and facilitating the underprivileged groups of any ideology to reduce their isolation.

Dr Intikhab Ulfat
Karachi

Published in Dawn, May 12th, 2022

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