ISLAMABAD - Pakistan Thursday alleged India of waging ‘cold war’ against it through Afghanistan and stoking terrorism inside the country through proxies.
Country’s interior ministry, in a briefing to a parliamentary panel here on Wednesday, also said that some proscribed outfits operating inside Pakistan had become a ‘real threat’ to the country’s national security.
In its briefing to the National Assembly Standing Committee on Interior, the ministry said that banned outfits, especially Tehreek-i-Taliban (TTP), Al-Qaeda al-Alami (AQA) and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), posed a real threat not only in the turbulent areas but in all the four provinces as well as the federal capital.
In the meeting held under the chairmanship of Rana Shamim Ahmed, State Minister for Interior Baleegur Rahman and National Crisis Management Cell (NCMC) Director General (DG) Tariq Lodhi told lawmakers that India was involved in terrorism in Balochistan and Azad Jammu & Kashmir.
They said terrorists were sneaking into Pakistan not only from the porous Western borders but also from the Eastern border with India. Moreover, arms were being smuggled in from all sides and being supplied to the terrorists. NCMC DG told the committee that TTP, LeJ and other proscribed organisations had become a real threat in Punjab while Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) had been declared the most dangerous area where AQA, TTP and LeJ had established their sleeping cells. He said Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Federally Administrated Tribal Areas (FATA) are already under attack from TTP, AQA, LeJ and other foreign sponsored terrorists.
Tariq Lodhi said that Gilgit Baltistan was threatened by AQA, TTP and LeJ while Azad Jammu Kashmir was facing Indian sponsored terrorism. “Sindh is facing threats from militant nationalists, ethnic terrorists, target killers and criminal syndicates, TTP, AQA and LeJ, while Balochistan is under threat from AQA, TTP, LeJ and13 outlawed Baloch militant groups,” he said. Foreign agencies were funding insurgents in Balochistan.
State Minister for Interior Baleegur Rehman said the final draft of National Security Policy would soon be presented before Cabinet for final approval. He said the number of proscribed organisations had not been increased and this number stood at 60. He said the government was keeping a close eye on the aid being provided to seminaries from Iran, Saudi Arabia and Gulf States.
Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) acting DG Ghalib Ali Bandesha told the committee that the government had given no timeframe to complete the investigations of Asghar Khan Case and only four persons had been interviewed so far who had allegedly doled out money among the politicians. On a query from MNA Nabeel Gabool, he said that the agency had direct control over the Exit Control List (ECL) as interior ministry had the powers to include or exclude any person’s name in the list. He informed the lawmakers that 6,778 persons were presently on the ECL.
The FIA chief informed them that 3,353 anti-corruption cases among total 3,483 were pending due to the shortage of anti-corruption courts. He said Intra-agency Task Force of FIA had arrested 3,164 persons while crossing borders illegally. He said FIA recovered one billion rupees in 2013 and the agency urgently required Rs18 million to run its affairs. He told the lawmakers that Pakistan deported 66, 427 illegal travellers during the last year while FIA had named141 most wanted people in its red book and 10 of them had been arrested.
Mr Bandesha informed that no recruitment was made in FIA during last four years and 1,200 posts were lying vacant in the agency. He said FIA was facing problems in curbing crime mainly because of being short of 25 percent strength than what is sanctioned. They are facing problem in curbing cyber crime due to absence of relevant laws, he added.
MQM MNA Nabeel Gabol demanded imposition of emergency in the country under Article 232 of the constitution which was opposed by lawmakers of PML-N and PPP. Gabool also exchanged hot words with Tahmina Daultana of PML-N and Yousaf Talpur of PPP on the issue. He said that government was talking of negotiating peace with Taliban while the banned organisation was giving them dead bodies in return.
He condemned the execution of 23 personnel of FC, killing of 22 police personnel in Karachi and attacks on the offices of Nawa-i-Waqt and Aaj TV. The chair ruled out need for emergency or a marshal law in the country after the committee unanimously passed resolution condemning the attacks on Waqt, Aaj and ARY TV offices in Karachi, killing of 23 Frontier Constabulary (FC) soldiers and of 22 police commandos in Karachi as well as other terrorist attacks.