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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Brutal killings: Deweaponisation is the answer

TARGET killings have become order of the day in the country and the authorities seem to have no answer to control the situation. Three lawyers and five others were killed in Karachi and another three in Quetta on Wednesday in what appears to be a free for all to take the lives of innocent people and law enforcement machinery unable to nab the culprits.

The lawyers fraternity boycotted the courts on Thursday to protest against the killings and some other organisations also organised demonstrations in Karachi and Quetta against the incidents. Angry people set tyres on fire on roads suspending traffic on Shahra-e-Faisal and National Highway but that is no solution and in fact it is like playing in the hands of subversive elements that want to destabilize the country on the orders of their masters. These killings are the result of massive weaponisation of the society. In Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa too weapons are being indiscriminately used to settle scores on grounds of personal enmity and in marriage parties and electioneering days aerial firings have become a culture. Though there is a ban on display of weapons but one may say that weapons, in the VIP circles security guards accompanying the political leaders openly display theirS arms giving terrifying scenes which is not symbol of a civilized society. Similarly terrorist groups and members of different mafias are heavily armed and they roam around freely creating a psychological dent in the society. In such an environment, people with some resources also acquire illegal weapons for their personal security and there is huge demand for such weapons all over the country. In a society where every third person is armed with legal or illegal weapons, one can expect killings on petty issues and with the passage of time the situation will certainly deteriorate. To prevent it, the only answer is deweaponisation and a total ban on issuance of arms licences. We understand that it is easy to suggest and difficult to implement but it is the foremost duty of the government to provide security to its citizens and it will have to find a way out to end the menace of target killings.

Pakistan Observer

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