A little walk through Shariah-e-Fatima up to the city police headquarters presents a most incredible picture of the state affairs the country finds itself engulfed at the moment. It seems as if we have entered in a war zone or war ravaged area soon after drone attack or hits of helicopter gunship by the enemy's forces. These horrific scenes are not only depressing enough for the local people longing for a better future, but also serve as a reminder to them of the conditions prevailing in the Frontier region where the war against Taliban is being waged in full fury. These destructive scenes also carry a strong message of something missing on our part. Probably, the spirit, vigour and enthusiasm are missing that used to be the hallmark of the Punjab government in Shahbaz Sharif's previous government in 1997 in dealing with law and order issue. The province was then rocked by the sectarianism. At present one does not witness a team effort in the provincial government to combat the terrorism, which is very important to get the desired results during such fights. So there was a pin drop silence in the official circles after the blast, the biggest ever experienced by the city in the recent times as the fall-out of the war against Taliban started. Apart from a small news item that the incident will be fully probed nothing much happened in the wake of the blast on the ground or behind the scene. But then we do not see any probe being instituted or deliberations going on involving different stakeholders to suggest that we are making a fresh and more determined start to protect the lives of our people. Instead of taking corrective measures all we see is buck passing, with police top brass thriving for years on covering up their shortcomings and showing false or fake statistics and arrests of 'culprits' to their political bosses to keep them in good humour. We do not see either the local police are ready to accept any lapse on its part. The police over the years in the absence of any accountability mechanism have developed a tendency to act only after something hits straight in the face. The terrorists used to succeed in their wicked designs before mainly due to failure of intelligence agency to track them down. It seems that now we have almost overcome this issue, once the bane of law and order problem. In the last three terrorist incidents that took place in the city, including the one which jolted Lahore more recently and its people out their peace of mind, there were specific intelligence reports. Yet the police and government failed to do the needful. Take the example of recent suicide attack that flattened the Police Rescue 115 building besides damaging the local police and ISI headquarters. The federal government had shared with provincial authorities information about the threat of suicide mission targeting official buildings near Lahore Zoo. This warning was made only week before and was in addition to other such communications of general type, asking the provincial governments to be on its guard as the Taliban could hit big cities in the wake of war in Swat. The ISI personnel and fighters probably took the warning more seriously than the provincial government. As such the ISI fighters were ready when the armed assailants started their operation and challenged the police. In a bloody encounter of three to four minutes they wiped out the three terrorists, including the one sitting in the car laden with huge quantity of explosives. But they could not avert the blast caused by a remote control device. As the ISI people were alert and vigilant from the day they received the information, we do not see similar urgency among their counterparts in the police. Reason being they did not take the intelligence reports from the federal government very seriously and so no extra security measures were adopted to pre-empt the terrorists from executing their plans. Here we can feel a lack of coordination between the federal and provincial governments. The CCPO Lahore instead of seriously looking into what happened declared the report of the provincial government being forewarned as nonsense. Interestingly, where were the police top brass after the blast. The CCPO Lahore hardly figured anywhere in the activities after the blast dominated again by the military officials. Even IGP visited the crime scene at around 6 pm, that too after security clearance. Just for the sake of comparison, watch the clipping of Peshawer blast that occurred the very next day of Lahore tragedy. You will note the CCPO Peshawer leading from front. Carrying a kalashnikov one could see him leading the search operation, gate crashing at suspected sites to find the terrorists fleeing after the attack with his force fully behind him. Imagine the morale of the police to find their leader among themselves spearheading an operation. Even the local people were cheering CCPO for his courage and involvement. Here our police leaders are more interested in getting security clearance first. E-mail: nadeemsyed@nation.com.pk