A ‘well-deserved’ grilling

The grilling of Prime Minister Imran Khan by the Supreme Court in the case of Army Public School (APS) Peshawar tragedy can arguably be termed the most justifiable act by the judiciary. Even before the court, the prime minister told a lie that he had visited Peshawar immediately after the incident and met with the parents of the children. In fact, he had visited APS after almost one month of the incident in January 2015, along with his newly-wed second wife Reham Khan where the grief-stricken parents had expressed massive resentment against him. Now, the court has put the onus of providing justice to the bereaved families on the PTI government. According to the court, it is important to satisfy the parents, who had lost their children to such a barbaric act. Three kinds of elements were involved in this case, culprits, facilitators and the officials, whose negligence caused this incident to happen. For the SC, the performance of the government is utterly unsatisfactory in the case so for. Surprisingly, no FIR has been registered against the persons who were responsible to ensure security at the APS, Peshawar.

It is a tragedy here in Pakistan that small officials bear the brunt of any negligence while those occupying high posts are allowed to go scot free whereas the basic responsibility is upon all those who sit at the helm of the affairs. Unless action is not taken against those heading powerful institutions, God forbid, such tragedies can happen again and again. The PM has to come out of his fallacy and get rid of his impulsive nature while dealing with serious matters. The parents of the APS martyrs are still seeking answers. Who are the culprits, the ominous ‘terrorists’? Whose ignorance caused this? What is their punishment? When will they be avenged? Unfortunately, some questions can never be fully answered but there is a lot that the government is capable of and responsible for, starting with answering how such an incident was allowed to happen, how could such a massive breach in such a high security area occur and how did the intelligence agencies remain so unaware. It is true that even the possibility of such a horrendous tragedy was not only unforeseeable but unimaginable. Nevertheless these questions importantly lead to the grim realisation that our counter-terrorism structure has been incapable at best, unable to grasp the magnitude of the phenomenon and what it could lead to. But the question is, has this complacency now worn off and have we taken the steps that are needed to ensure that such a lapse never occurs again?