Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has sought information regarding 1,000 terrorists roaming at large in Punjab province and budget cut for Counter Terrorism Department by Rs 792.826 million for the fiscal year 2015-16.
The PTI leader Andleeb Abbas has sought this information from the Punjab government under Punjab Transparency and Right to Information Act 2013 through a letter to the principal secretary.
“I, Andleeb Abbas, need certified information regarding Punjab police’s admission before the Lahore High Court that more than 1,000 proclaimed offenders booked in terror cases are at large in the province,” she said in the letter. On November 25, 2016, a report submitted by the Punjab Police and Counter Terrorism Department with the Lahore High Court said that more than one thousand terror accused are on the run in the province, the letter said.
Abbas has sought answers for the following five questions. (1) Why have Punjab police failed to apprehend these terrorists, despite the fact that out of the total 122,722 combing operations carried out in the country, 56,834 (46 per cent) were conducted in Punjab alone?
(2). The police admitted in its report that out of 57 proclaimed offenders, who were arrested during the month of October 2016, 41 managed to escape. Has any action been taken against the negligence of the officials concerned?
3. Why was the Counter Terrorism Department budget cut by Rs 792.826 million for the fiscal year 2015-16? As per the budget documents, budget estimates were Rs 4,047.638 million which were later revised to Rs 3,254.812 million. Where were these Rs 792.826 million utilised/diverted?
4. The police also admitted that National Action Plan against terrorism had been severely hampered in the province by the poor performance of the police and Counter Terrorism Department. What steps has the Punjab government taken to improve the performance of the police and Counter Terrorism Department?
5. If the police have failed to protect ordinary citizens and their lives are in danger due to high crime rates and terrorists on the loose, why has the Punjab government not invited Rangers to control the situation?
The letter written to the Punjab government also said that according to the police/CTD report, 17 out of the 22 most-wanted terrorists in the country belong to Punjab.
This is criminal negligence of endangering the lives of citizens due to failure of the provincial government to take action against notorious terrorists despite the Lahore High Court’s order, it said. “Kindly give me certified information and respond to these questions within 14 days as specified in the Punjab Transparency and Right to Information Act 2013,” said Andleeb Abbas.