Islamabad attack: SC orders installation of CCTV cameras in district courts within 48 hours

Published: March 4, 2014
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A police commandos stop a photo journalist near a local court building after a gun and suicide attack in Islamabad on March 3, 2014.  PHOTO: AFP

A police commandos stop a photo journalist near a local court building after a gun and suicide attack in Islamabad on March 3, 2014. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered that closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras of high resolution should be installed in district courts within 48 hours in order to avoid attacks, Express News reported.

A three-member bench – headed by Chief Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani – was hearing the Islamabad district courts attack case today.

Shahid Khan, the chief bureaucrat in the interior ministry, had told the court that cameras and three security scanner gates at the district courts had been broken for some time.

“The Secretary Interior is directed to make the CCTV cameras functional within 48 hours and by the evening ensure that compensation to the victims’ families is announced,” the top judge said.

On March 3, two suicide bombers and their armed accomplices had attacked the district courts in Islamabad’s sector F-8 killing 11 people, including an additional sessions judge, and injuring over two dozen others.

Islamabad police chief Sikandar Hayat was also told to submit a report about the security detail on March 10 and their response to the attack.

Jillani also directed the president and secretary of the Islamabad District Bar Association to submit eyewitness accounts of the incident.

“They should explain in their statements what they saw and mention that despite their efforts the response of policemen was lukewarm and how they were reluctant to fire upon attackers,” Jillani said.

Taking suo motu notice of the attack, the chief justice had summoned the interior secretary, chief commissioner and inspector general of police (IGP) Islamabad today (Tuesday) in court.

Chief Justice Jillani had also directed IGP to “submit a list of police officials posted at the district courts/kutchery, Islamabad, for security duties.”

Today, the interior secretary submitted a report regarding the attack which stated that the police reached the site of the attack within seven minutes. However, Justice Khilji Arif Hussain said that if the police had reached in seven minutes, the loss would have been less. Hussain said that it took the police around 45 minutes to reach the district courts.

The report also stated that 66 police officers were supposed to be present at the district courts however, only 44 police officers were present at the time of the attack.

Express News has obtained a copy of the report submitted by the interior secretary.

During the hearing, Chief Justice Jillani questioned why none of the attackers was injured if police officers had weapons and responded to the attack. Responding to this, the interior secretary said that the police did fire at the attackers but the attackers blew themselves up.

The apex court ordered the authorities to identify policemen who failed to respond to the gun and suicide bomb attack. The court also asked for detailed reports on the incident by March 10.

Judicial inquiry

The Islamabad chief commissioner ordered a judicial inquiry into the attack on the district courts on March 3.

Deputy Commissioner Mujahid Sherdil will lead the inquiry and present its findings on March 7.

The inquiry will investigate the following five questions regarding the attack:

• How many attackers were involved in the assault?

• How did they enter the district courts?

• Was the security at the courts present according to Standard Operating Procedure?

• Did the rescue operation take place on time?

• What steps did the police take in order to stop the attackers?

The findings of the judicial inquiry will be presented to the chief commissioner as well as the interior ministry.

DNA

The DNA samples of the two suicide bombers involved in the attack on the district courts were sent to National Database Registration Authority.

According to sources, it can take eight to 10 days for the DNA report to come. The two bombers were reportedly Pakistani nationals.

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Reader Comments (7)

  • bala
    Mar 4, 2014 - 11:19AM

    This is funny. Can cctv camaras stop terror in Pakistan ? Are you going to install cctv camaras in north south waziristan jungls and mountains too ?

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  • Zeeshan
    Mar 4, 2014 - 12:10PM

    Incompetent police force will always provide this outcome. Even if 44 well trained & well equipped Police officers were present the outcome of the situation would have been much better.

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  • Mar 4, 2014 - 12:39PM

    Why do we have to wait for terrorist attacks for such basic implementations?

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  • Syed
    Mar 4, 2014 - 1:55PM

    CCTV is feasible on Post attack for identification only , what is the preemptive measures taken after the current incident. We need security professionals here. i think army will assist on this.

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  • Yusuf
    Mar 4, 2014 - 2:26PM

    Closing the stable door after the horse has bolted…

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  • AAK
    Mar 4, 2014 - 2:32PM

    Give Contract to most honest Tycoon of Pakistan “Arsalan Chaudry” . He will put most sophisticated Cameras. Rather will give direct contact with Taleban.

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  • incognito
    Mar 4, 2014 - 3:31PM

    Reflects on the IQ level of our esteemed judges! Being paid millions at expense of poor tax payers! Epic no?Recommend

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