Implementation of NAP questioned in Senate

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Until the state abandons its policy of favouring some militant groups that seek to target countries in the region and until it curbs hate speech the fight against militancy will remain elusive.

This was stated by Senator Farhatullah Babar while taking part in discussion on the National Action Plan (NAP) on a motion moved by PPP Senator Sehar Kamran in the Senate today.

Questioning the policy of blocking UN move to impose sanctions against the head of a banned militant outfit he said that such diabolical policies raised serious questions about our intentions and policies.

He said that activists challenging state narrative on militancy and national security are silenced through a vicious hate campaign on social and electronic media. Today hate speech flourishes while dissent with state narrative is not only silenced but also punished covertly without recourse to law, he said adding ‘this is a new and most disturbing trend’.

The government must come out clean on the priorities it has in the fight against militancy. Are we going to fight only those militants who are targeting our citizens or are we also going to fight also those whose target is across the borders, he asked?

Significant progress witnessed on NAP

Minister of Sate for Interior and Narcotics Control Balighur Rehman Monday informed the Senate that the government did not ignore National Action Plan (NAP) rather top priority is being given to it resulting significant progress in this regard.

He said the prime minister himself monitored the NAP and many meetings were held to ensure its implementation in letter and spirit.

The minister said incidents of terrorisms have significantly decreased owing to effective implementation of NAP.

Regarding National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA), Balighur Rehman said earlier its budget was mere Rs110 million which was enhanced to Rs1.6 billion by the incumbent government. A sum of Rs1.4 billion has been released so far, he added.

He said many officers have been recruited and more were being inducted through transparent process.

About hate speech, the ministers said over 250,000 calls were received on helpline 1717 set up to register complaints. Around 16,000 cases were registered against the violators and some 1,435 culprits were arrested, he added.

About establishing Counter Terrorism Force (CTF) across the country, the minister said 500 personnel of CTF had already been recruited in Islamabad, 1180 in Punjab, 728 in Sindh, 1000 in Balochistan and 1200 in KPK.

He said Pakistan is the first country where all mobile phone SIMs were verified biometrically.

Regarding mapping of religious seminaries, Bailghur Rehman said 100 per cent mapping of seminaries has been completed in the federal capital, Punjab and Sindh while it was 75 per cent in KPK, 65 per cent in Balochistan and 80 per cent in FATA.