ISLAMABAD/LAHORE - Blaming intelligence agencies of India and Afghanistan for their role in terrorism in Pakistan at this point of time is nothing but an attempt to sabotage the efforts of the newly elected government on evolving broad-based national consensus to tackle the scourge of terrorism in the country, political and defence analysts say.
Some government sources also maintained that these efforts were aimed at creating mistrust between Pakistan and India and disrupting ruling PML-N’s efforts to develop friendly relations with India to evolve common strategy for fighting terrorism and extremism.
"Blaming foreign hands at this stage is to deflect efforts of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his government in tackling terrorism,” leading defence analyst Lt-Gen(r) Talat Massod quipped. He questioned the credibility of the media reports in this regard and said these were in contradiction to the gestures of Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, who appears to reciprocate positively to Nawaz Sharif's initiative to normalise relations with India as well as Afghanistan.
General Talat was of the view that such media reports were not valid since the Americans have very deep intelligence network in Pakistan, therefore, blaming foreign hands for scourge of terrorism in the country would not be appropriate proposition. He rather urged Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and PTI chief Imran Khan to join hands and foil such attempts, which are ostensibly aimed at undermining efforts of their governments in tackling terrorism.
Although there was no official input immediately available from the ISPR, credible military sources said that Pakistan Army as well as the national security agencies were in process of finalising their respective assessments on challenges related to terrorism in the country for the government consumption. “These are mere conjectures as final assessment has yet to come from the relevant quarters,” sources said while commenting on the reports.
On the other hand, PTI central information secretary Dr Shireen Mizari said that government was not sincere in addressing the issue of terrorism as situation warrants practical steps to tackle the challenge rather than wasting time on rhetoric. She said her party would participate in the upcoming APC being convened by the government and would give its proposals.
“It is very easy to blame others and cover own failure behind a conspiracy theory. It has been practice of (almost) all governments of the country to blame others instead of accepting the failure in maintaining the law and order,” said Dr Mehdi Hasan, political commentator and Dean of Faculty of Social Studies at Beaconhouse National University, Lahore. Dr Hasan was of the view that ongoing killings and bomb blasts were occurring due to shortcomings of our intelligence agencies. He sees three major forces at play behind terrorism in Pakistan – sectarianism, Taliban and criminal mafia. He was of the view that Balochistan separatists’ activities were limited to that province.
Dr Mehdi said, “The enemy always takes benefit of weaknesses. Suppose someone thinks India is the enemy then what one should expect from the enemy.” If RAW, Mossad or NDS are involved in terrorism in Pakistan, who is responsible to stop them, he questioned. He claimed that India was not in a position to carry out covert offensive activities on the soil of any other country as it was pre-occupied with its own security related issues.
Mehdi said there was no border between Pakistan and Afghanistan and the same people were behind the terrorist activities in both countries. He said Hamid Karzai government had failed in Afghanistan and now he was blaming Pakistan for his failure. He claimed that America had no more interest in the issues being faced by Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Former federal minister and political analyst Dr Mubashir Hasan said that no doubt intelligence agencies operate in other countries but had the RAW been involved in spreading terrorism in Pakistan, our intelligence agencies would have been able to unearth the perpetrators.
But, he said, our agencies never talked about the involvement of RAW in bombings and killings in Pakistan. He said government had failed to arrest the attackers because masses in general were not interested in helping the government in this.
ANP leader Haji Adeel said that when Taliban and Lashkar-e-Jhanvi owned the bombings and killings, “how we can blame intelligence agency of any other country”. He said in 90 percent cases, some home grown terrorist organisation accepts the responsibility of the attack. He further said country’s ground intelligence network has been badly damaged due to which they fail to get information.