APS investigation progress be made public demands petition

According to the petition, government was provided intelligence prior to attack but did nothing


Our Correspondent March 04, 2016
According to the petition, government was provided intelligence prior to attack but did nothing. PHOTO: REUTERS

PESHAWAR:


A petition filed at the Peshawar High Court on Thursday sought an order which would instruct the government to reveal whether culprits involved in the Army Public School massacre have been identified. The petition asked that the court order the authorities to make the information public.


Filed by the father of APS victim Asfand Khan, Advocate Ajun Khan, the petition identified the provincial government, FATA additional chief secretary, K-P IGP, National Counter Terrorism Authority and federal interior secretary as respondents.

APS victims’ families demand judicial commission investigation

Asking various questions, the petition sought information on steps taken to secure educational institutes after intelligence was gathered on the APS attack.

The petition also asked the government to outline action taken against authorities responsible for school security and provide reasons for not taking parents into confidence on intelligence reports.

Ignoring intelligence?

Ajun claimed the national counter-terrorism department shared intelligence with the K-P government on August 28, 2014 about threats from the Taliban. The information suggested the banned group planned on carrying out attacks on educational institutions; especially those being run by Pakistan Army to avenge the death of fallen militants.

His petition said no steps were taken to improve security of schools despite the intelligence intercepts and authorities should explain if this was criminal negligence or a conspiracy to let it happen.

“Why did the administration not protect the walls of APS to thwart the attempt? Who were the officials [who did not fulfil] their responsibility and what action has been taken to fix responsibility for this criminal negligence?” the petition asked. The petitioner sought answers for why sensitive information was ignored which ultimately resulted in the tragic loss of over 140 lives.

For justice: APS victims’ families seek judicial probe

The petition also wanted information on the plan of the respondents to ensure such incidents do not repeat themselves.

Ajun stated he had taken these questions to the president of Pakistan, Defense Committee Chairman Mushahid Hussain Syed and Chief Minister Pervez Khattak, but they all failed to provide answers.

He said all of them were avoiding these questions. Ajun maintained it was the right of the petitioner and other parents to be informed of the progress in the investigation and have access to necessary information.

The petition said it was the petitioner’s right to have access to information of public importance under Article 19 of the Constitution of Pakistan.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 4th, 2016.

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