Nisar urges media to play role in countering challenge of terrorism
ISLAMABAD: Minister for Interior Ch. Nisar Ali Khan Saturday urged the media to play its role in countering menace of terrorism and to unite the nation by keeping feelings of fear and depression away from them.
Addressing the consultation meeting, along with Minister of State for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage Marriyum Aurangzeb, he said Presidents and General Secretariats of Pakistan Broadcasting Association, All Pakistan Newspaper Society, Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors have been invited to attend the meeting.
He said the purpose to convene this meeting was to discuss one-point agenda of countering terrorism.
He said such a meeting had earlier been convened on January 18, 2015 and it was appealed to media for not giving space to representatives of terrorist organizations.
“I always appreciated the role of media after this meeting two years earlier after which running commentary of representatives of terrorism organizations was completely stopped,” he said.
Ch. Nisar said that media has great strength and reach towards public and it should play role to motivate people by keeping them united and determined against terrorism.
The entire nation should be kept united and determined by media for ultimate victory in war against terrorism,” he added.
Minister for Interior said that law and order situation has improved a lot during the last three and half years. On average, he said six to seven explosions used to occur daily in past but significant decline had been witnessed after the efforts during the last three and half years.
Ch. Nisar said it was not a justification for any deteriorating situation but it was the fact that number of explosions did reduce from more than 2000 to 700 per year at present.
Out of these 700 explosions, he said no loss of life was reported in 260 incidents.
The minister said that Pakistan has porus border of around 2500 kilometres with Afghanistan and there are multi-faceted issues in this regard.
He said that 30,000 to 40,000 people used to travel earlier without documents through this border, with no policy to stop them or data-bank to check the movement of people.
He said effective measures have been taken to counter terrorism and the success story is due to efforts of all law enforcement agencies of Pakistan.
Ministry of Interior, he said, issued security alerts for several times. “I made strict accountability during internal meetings but never publicly criticized any one by using the slot of interior minister,” he added.
He said that he deemed it inappropriate to do politics by using the name of war against terrorism.
Ch. Nisar said that he had to face criticism after the incident of Sehwan Sharif whose security was purely subject of provincial government.
” Chief Secretary was asked to explain security measures before Sehwan Sharif incident but he had nothing to reply,” the minister said adding that security of the shrine was provincial responsibility but even I was criticized on it.
Ch. Nisar Ali Khan said it is the mutual responsibility of all stakeholders to ensure implementation on 20-point National Action Plan (NAP). He said that 10 points are responsibility of the provinces, four of Interior Ministry, four of other ministries and one point is about army.
Ministry for Interior, he said, was criticized for political scoring in case of any discussion on NAP. He said foreign hand is involved behind terrorist activities in Pakistan and funding, financing and strategic planning behind terrorism incidents was of our enemies.
He urged media to keep courage and determination of people high in this war against menace of terrorism.
He said that messages were disseminated in wars of 1965 and 1971 to keep morale of people high and it is the need of the hour to keep spirit of people alive in war against terrorist elements.
The minister said that terrorism incidents can’t make our determination low and we feel more determined to root out this menace in case of any mishap.
” We have won war on operational level and our enemy would not be allowed to get our lives disturbed,” he added.
Terrorism acts, Ch. Nisar said, declined after national unity in wake of APS incident at Peshwar and credit goes to entire nation as it was not possible for one institution, government or party.
He said it was decided in Prime Minister House to launch Radul Fasad Operation as it is against terrorists and their facilitator alike Zarb-e-Azb which was against terrorists at border areas .
He said our government ensured legislation for prevention of cyber crime despite hurdles on it.
Ch. Nisar stressed to shun differences to focus on fight against terrorism. Ch. Nisar said media can’t be restricted and its role is important to win war against terrorism.
He urged the participants to further consider as how to corner or blacklist terrorists and inform government about expectations with it.
In the end, State Minister for Information and Broadcasting thanked all participants for attending the meeting. The meeting was attended among others by Parliamentary Secretary Dr. Muhammad Afzal Khan Dhandla, PIO Rao Tehseen Ali Khan and other senior officials.
The delegation of media organizations included Sarmad Ali, Mian Aamir Mehmud, Shakeel Masood, Ejaz ul Haq, Mehtab Khan, Umer Mujeeb Shami, Shaheen Qureshi, Jameel Ahmed, Tahir Farooq, Abdul Basit and others. Senior Journalists Mujeeb ur Rehman Shami and Arif Nizami also attended the meeting.