Finance Ministry would make available funds required for the implementation of National Action Plan (NAP). “A turf war” between Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali is being cited by senior bureaucrats as the reason for the Finance Ministry’s meagre releases for the implementation of National Internal Security Policy (NISP).
Sources further revealed to Business Recorder that there is growing criticism of the Finance Minister Dar by his Cabinet colleagues as well as backbenchers after the Peshawar tragedy for not making the required funds available to the Ministry of Interior to enable the implementation of the NISP. They, however, maintained that subsequent to the Peshawar tragedy there is a feeling that adequate funds would now be arranged to counter terrorism and implement NAP by diverting resources from other heads.
Interior Ministry had sought Rs 32 billion for the implementation NISP but the Finance Minister, who acknowledges law and order situation as one of the major hurdles in domestic and foreign investment, provided Rs 95 million in his first budget and Rs 92 million in the current year’s budget or less than 1 percent of what was required.
Interior Ministry is, however, expected to provide details of the requisite funds for the current year to the Finance Ministry to enable smooth and uninterrupted implementation of the policy. The fact that the government is willing to spend billions on politically motivated projects, including a metro bus, is a reflection of the government’s lack of seriousness in tackling terrorism, critics maintain.
National Counter Terrorism Authority (Nacta) was established in 2009 to counter a wave of violence in the country; however, the Authority’s requirements in terms of manpower and funds were never met.
As per NISP, the federal government is required to provide Rs 10 billion and provinces Rs 22 billion for implementation of the policy. Sources said that the situation has dramatically changed after the Peshawar tragedy and the required funding may have escalated and the Interior Ministry is therefore required to provide details in this regard in the light of current scenario.
Nacta was responsible to receive and collect data/information/intelligence, and disseminate and co-ordinate between all relevant stakeholders for taking timely actions to counter acts of terrorism and extremism.
The Authority would be responsible to co-ordinate and prepare comprehensive national counter terrorism and counter extremism strategies, and review them periodically. Nacta would also be responsible to develop an action plan against terrorism and extremism and report to the federal government on implementation of these plans periodically.
Under NISP, Nacta will create necessary capacity to develop an integrated and unified response to terrorism and extremism with the objective of protecting national interests. The Authority will ensure co-ordination among all relevant departments and structures of NISP. The Authority will work as a think-tank for the federal government to produce policy recommendations, monitor and supervise policy implementation, and concurrently provide support to intelligence-based operational departments at federal and provincial levels.
NISP proposes setting up of a Directorate of Internal Security (DIS) under Nacta to co-ordinate the intelligence and operational work of all civilian and military agencies to effectively counter terrorism.
SOURCE: RECORDER REPORT