LAHORE -  The Institute for Policy Reforms has suggested the government to lead the counter-terrorism strategy during the fight against terrorism, as durable peace and stability in the region is pre-requisite for high economic growth and development.
A report titled “No Time to Lose: How the Civil Government must Lead during Conflict” issued by the Institute for Policy Reforms states that the government must lead with a counter-terrorism strategy during the fight against militancy.
The whole nation as well as the entire business community in the larger national interest including all chambers across the country must stand united at the call of the government to flush out the terror from the region. There was no option left except launching military operation against terrorists as business community, importers and exporters suffered billions of dollars in terrorism spate in the country.  The report said that the govt must respond by reducing the suffering of IDPs, prevent or minimize effects of any blowback by militants, resolve the ambiguity about who is the enemy, and build popular support in favour of the military. While the country is clearly at war, the government is not prepared with an adequate response to any of the above challenges. In this situation, the report says, “we could possibly lose in the cities what we would likely win on the battlefields.”
A team of senior experts including researchers, former cabinet members, and former officials with extensive experience of enforcement, information gathering, and policymaking contributed to the report.
Since this problem became serious in 2008, governments have been ambivalent about a counter-terrorism strategy. In fact, until lately, there was no CT plan in the country. A comprehensive policy announced earlier this year awaits implementation.
Even after army action, there is no sign ‘of a coordination mechanism or concrete actionable plans’ for CT. Political leaders mostly have not ‘motivated public opinion in favour of war objectives’.
The report holds that there are weaknesses in the civil administration and political institutions and no serious effort is underway to gear up to the threat of violence and build a narrative against militancy. It is for the leaders at the centre and in provinces to show urgency and seriousness and to task government officials to improve performance in response to the threats. They must lead and coordinate to use effectively intelligence information, enforcement activities, and to ensure successful prosecution. Often the accused is set free in many obvious cases of militancy.