LAW & ORDER NEEDS TO BE MAINTAINED AT ALL COST

MOHAMMED ARIFEEN
(feedback@pgeconomist.com)

Apr 30 - May 6, 20
12

The deteriorating law and order situation in Pakistan is a result of the tyrannical political system, which does not provide security of life, honor, and property to the huge population.

The law and order situation arises when there is insecurity from all corners of the country and violence interrupting the conduct of life and businesses in a society.

The violence may take place due to religious, sectarian extremism, labor unions' strikes, boycotts, lockouts, and ethnic, racial, linguistic strife.

Adverse law and order conditions created difficulties for the economy, which has been hit by energy and food shortages. The situation has slowed down the process of investment in the country, and created massive unemployment, poverty, hunger, and health issues.

Various unbecoming incidents of bomb explosions, suicide bombing, and targeted killing at the public places by extremists, militants, and radical elements and killing of innocent civilians by the miscreants show that law and order situation is adversely affecting society and the economy.

Our best gifted students are leaving Pakistan for good due to unpredictability of jobs and insecurity to their life and property in their homeland. The curse of brain drain is greatly depriving the country of the best intellectuals.

Despite Pakistan having beautiful hilly areas, gleaming peaks, lofty mountains, gushing rivers, archeological sites, and historical memoirs, our tourism industry is not attracting tourists and foreigners due to security concerns.

Pakistan has a lot of investment potential, which could not be fully exploited because of the deteriorating law and situation in the country. The economy of Pakistan is in disorderly conditions. The investors fear of losing their investment due to continuous terrorist activities.

Despite day to day ethnic encounters and sectarian conflicts, huge rise in various criminal activity and rising insurgencies, both political and military policymakers have failed to bring the state to normalcy.

The worst victims of degenerating law and order in the country are the poverty stricken and downtrodden people. Therefore, it requires attention that any examination of the affect of law and order on economic condition must start with the security of the poorer section in the society.

No study of economic situation is fully complete without taking into consideration three related economic indicators such as poverty, unemployment, inflation especially food inflation. All these indicators currently are not showing any good sign in Pakistan.

Despite a massive revenue loss of over and above Rs25 billion due to law and order situation in Karachi, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has managed to collect Rs1270 billion during July-March (2011-12) against Rs1020 billion in the corresponding period last fiscal year. The ongoing disturbed law and order situation in Karachi has, otherwise, adversely affected the revenue collection of the FBR.

There is the need of forceful reforms and the restructuring and revitalizing of the law enforcement agencies matched with capacity building of the forces to fight against criminals and target killers with revived zeal and commitment.

Those found involved in extremely wicked crimes should be given exemplary punishments and no mercy should be shown to them. The law enforcement agencies should take action against the perpetrators by dismissing all political affiliations.

Deweaponization campaigns must be launched across the board in the troubled cities in a bid to effectively flush out the miscreants of illegal weapons. The federal and provincial governments should establish coordination and improve intelligence sharing to track down the miscreants and target killers.

The role of police force in this context is vital for maintaining law and order situation in Pakistan. Weak and blemished law enforcement capacity in the federally administered tribal areas (FATA) and the adjacent Khyber Pakhtunkhwa have no doubt helped to crush somewhat Pakistani Taliban and other terrorist groups but they need to do more in totally crushing these elements.

Police is in pathetic condition. It is ill-equipped, badly trained, thoroughly politicized, and corrupt. It has performed well in certain major operations. Overall, however, that is an uncommon phenomenon. The government has failed to invest extravagantly in law enforcement reform and sophistication.

There is an urgent need for increasing the security setup in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and tribal areas that include armed forces in support of police, and paramilitary forces to prevent deterioration of law and order in the most sensitive areas.

The established community police force in the tribal areas needs to be involved into the mainstream of local administration of law and order and other areas may also be considered for having such community force.

Modern training with sophisticated arms may be imparted to police force to combat terrorism.

The government needs to reduce its dependence on the use of military force to address internal security issues, and should enhance the capacity of paramilitary forces i.e. rangers, the frontier corps and other law enforcement agencies. This has to be taken in view of the high number of casualties incurred during operational attacks in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA. A better coordination among various agencies and law enforcement departments is also advocated.

The government and media are required to create more space for cultural and social activities, provide healthy facilities for the youth, and ascertain proper usage of funds allocated for youth and cultural growth.

Reconciliation and confidence building process in Balochistan should immediately be expedited and action plans must take place to remove the genuine grievances of the Balochis.

The proposals of Balochistan on resource distribution and gas development must be settled once for all. More development funds, especially for better health and education, must be allocated.

Temporary rehabilitation facilities for the resettled IDPs in their areas must be provided and the process of developing permanent facilities be accelerated. Special counterinsurgency contingents of paramilitary should be raised. Physical infrastructure including road and bridges in inaccessible affected areas must be constructed.

Peace in the city of Karachi should be restored on priority basis. Karachi contributes 67 percent in national revenue and 25 to 35 percent in national GDP. The city's business community suffers a loss of Rs4 billion to Rs5 billion per day due to strikes.