‘Extraordinary circumstances’: Two-year ‘security emergency’ proposed

Nisar says military courts will not be used against politicians, Madaris, media persons, businessmen or other civilian

Qamar Zaman January 04, 2015
"Action will be taken against those Madaris we have evidence are involved in militancy," Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. PHOTO: PID


A day after the political leadership evolved a much-needed consensus on military courts, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said he has proposed the government declare an “unscheduled national security emergency for two years” in light of the ‘current extraordinary circumstances’.

The minister made the revelation at a news conference in Islamabad on Saturday – but didn’t share details of his proposal. Nisar said a nationwide crackdown has been launched against terrorist organisations, including the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), its facilitators and financers.

“We have launched 400 intelligence-based actions over the last few days in which more than 100 terrorists have been killed and 250 arrested,” he said.

He urged citizens to share with law-enforcers any information they have about terror suspects and their supporters, abettors, facilitators and financers. “It is important for the public to report any suspicious activity on the 1717 helpline,” he added. However, he warned that the helpline “must not be toyed with.”

Responding to a question about the proposed military courts, Nisar said the army did not pressure politicians on the issue. “The army did not even take a stance, let alone pressure anyone,” he said. “All political parties were at the meeting and nothing was decided in secrecy.”

Asked about who proposed the establishment of military courts, the minister said, “Leave it, there is a consensus over it now.” He, however, reassured that the military courts would try only ‘jet-black’ and hardened terrorists and they would not be used against any politician, religious seminary, media person, businessman or civilian.

The military courts would not be kangaroo courts, he said, adding that the judiciary would continue to work as before as the new courts did not mean a lack of trust in the judicial system.

A trial in a military court would not spell into an automatic death sentence, he added. “Those tried before the military courts will have an opportunity to absolve themselves. In the absence of evidence, they will be allowed to walk free.”

The minister said military courts would try those terrorists who attacked mosques, bazaars and public places and killed women, children, civilians and law-enforcers. These terrorists butchered and beheaded people and killed 137 children and staff in the December 16 merciless attack on the Army Public School in Peshawar. When these terrorists were arrested, they threatened judges, their children and lawyers, he added.

Nisar pointed out that setting up military courts was only one aspect of the National Action Plan against terrorism. About the implementation of the plan, he said the provinces have as much responsibility as the federal government. He said it was time for the provinces to stop blaming the federal government for everything.

According to the minister, there were more than 60 banned organisations in the country. In the first phase, action would be taken against the groups fighting against the state, he said.

Nisar said the first step the government would take against these outfits was to choke their funding. The Federal Board of Revenue, intelligence agencies and provincial governments would act in concert towards this end, he added.

Responding to a question, the minister said four Muslim countries that give donations to mosques in Pakistan have been asked to assist the government in ensuring the funds were only transferred through verified channels.

About other aspects of the National Action Plan, Nisar said the government would take action against anyone who used hate speech or stoked sectarian differences. “The misuse of loudspeakers will not be allowed and action will be taken against those Madaris (Islamic seminaries) we have evidence are involved in militancy,” he said. “Very few Madaris are involved in militancy, but we will share evidence against them with Ulema and take them to task.”

Published in The Express Tribune, January 4th, 2015.


Jibran | 6 years ago | Reply

Who is the sympathizer if Ch. Nisar and Irfan Siddiqi are not?

Imran | 6 years ago | Reply

so terrorist creators and sympathizers will not be targeted( mullahs,politicians and buisness man) Minister how about naming these so called countries involved in financing terrorist through out pakistan and why are they still going to be allowed to finance religious parties and seminaries.

You can beat around the bush for another 10 years, with this selective justice. Only solution left today or tomorrow is complete and honest operation.

Name the countries,politicians and buisness man involved in this trade of death and punish them other wise stop waiting our time . Carry the scorpion on your back sooner the later he will bite you too.

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