Operation outcome proves terrorist safe havens exist in Punjab: Dr Tahir-ul-Qadri

PAT Chairman Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri has said that the results of operations in Punjab have proven that there are safe havens of terrorists in the province. He said that arrests and killing of known terrorists from Punjab is a proof that those denying the presence of terrorists here in the province have been telling a lie to the nation. He said that if elimination of terrorism is the sole responsibility of the military, are the rulers meant for looting the national resources?

Dr Tahir-ul-Qadri expressed these views while addressing a committee established to review the party constitution. He said that the central character of every major incident is found hiding in Punjab. He said that arrests and killing of hardcore terrorists from Punjab 48 hours after the launch of army operations is a significant development, which raises serious questions. He said that the provincial government should be held answerable about it, adding that it needs to be found out under whose facilitation these criminal elements were roaming around in the city of Lahore and across Punjab. He said that it also remains to be asked as to why the provincial government and the intelligence agencies under its administrative control were unware of them.

Dr Qadri said that despite passage of one year since the approval of the National Action Plan, the stubbornness of the rulers knows no bounds. He said that we have been saying this at the top of our voices for last many years that the roots of terrorism lie in ideological extremism and terrorism is a natural outcome of radicalism. He made it clear that intellectual extremism would not end with machine guns and weapons, adding that nurseries generating such a radicalized mindset will have to be packed up once and for all. He asked whether hate material and offensive speeches have been put an end to under the NAP. Have sources of secret funding been tracked down? The process of registering religious seminaries been completed? Has curriculum promoting extremism and hatred been weeded out from syllabi of seminaries? He said with great regret that nothing seems to have been done on the ground as the present rulers have political vested interests in the status quo.

The PAT Chairman said that we started the initiative of knowledge to eradicate ideological and intellectual radicalism six months ago but added in the same breath that the rulers have been trying to sabotage it through their proxies. He said that those talking of peace are not on the right side of the rulers. He said that despite severe differences, we supported the NAP in the larger national interest but it is a matter of great misfortune that those who approved it are bent on thwarting it. He said that Punjab has become a safe haven of terrorists due to corruption and patronage and the facts emerging from operation of last three days bear witness to this reality. He said that we want to appeal to the army, Rangers and the agencies to take the operation to its logical conclusion.

Strongly condemning the terrorist act in Lakki Marwat, Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri expressed his grief on the loss of precious lives. He also criticized the government’s plan to increase the prices of POL products. He said that the relief in the form of reduction of POL tariff globally was not wholly passed onto the masses and the expected increase is meant to tease the people. He said that the surge of prices of POL products directly affect the common man.