ISLAMABAD: A Supreme Court judge has regretted the policy of appeasement towards banned terrorist outfits and wondered for how long the state would be scared of these non-state actors.
“Sometimes it is said that the terrorists should be facilitated in one way or the other or these terrorists were offered to sit at the table for dialogue and negotiations,” noted Justice Qazi Faez Isa at a case hearing here on Wednesday.
He was part of a three-judge bench, also comprising Justice Yahya Afridi and Justice Mohammad Ali Mazhar, which took up a bail petition of one Ahmed Ali.
While regretting the policy of ‘reconciliation with the terrorists’, Justice Isa wondered why we were still negotiating with the terrorists. “Today the terrorists will kill two persons and tomorrow they will assassinate five. We have no idea which kind of a society we are living in,” Justice Isa said. “Where is the state?” he wondered.
Justice Isa observed that a judge was killed but nobody seemed to have a slightest remorse over such incidents. Though he did not name anyone, he was apparently referring to former chief justice of Balochistan High Court Noor Mohammad Meskanzai, who was shot dead outside a mosque in the Kharan district in October 2022.
A judge had made a report on terrorism — a reference to the one he authored as the head of a commission that probed the August 2016 Quetta terrorism carnage in which 74 people including lawyers lost their lives — but the same was consigned to the dustbin, Justice Isa regretted.
In the 110-page report, Justice Isa highlighted the need of timely proscribing terrorist organisations without any delay by enforcing Anti-Terrorism Act in letter and spirit and emphasised that the premier intelligence agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) be made accessible to provide valuable input for combating terrorism.
Published in Dawn, February 2nd, 2023
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