As a major step forward towards implementation of National Action Plan (NAP) on counterterrorism, chief commissioner Islamabad has constituted a scrutiny committee which would examine Islamabad-related terrorism cases and forward them to the apex committee to take final decision for trial of such cases in the newly-established military courts, The Nation has learnt reliably on Wednesday.
An Order issued by the deputy commissioner Islamabad office, a copy of which is exclusively available with The Nation, says that chief commissioner Islamabad has constituted a scrutiny committee consisting of 9 members from different security organisations including Judge Advocate General (JAG) Branch, General Headquarters (GHQ) Rawalpindi, Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB). District magistrate Islamabad would be the chairman of the committee. The members, according to the Order, include district attorney Islamabad, senior superintendent of police Islamabad (operations), deputy superintendent of police (legal) Islamabad, representatives from NACTA, ministry of interior, IB, ISI, Special Branch ICT police and JAG Branch GHQ Rawalpindi.
The order says the committee may co-opt any additional members as deemed appropriate in the exigency of work. The mandate of the committee is to examine terrorism-related cases as per procedure laid down by the government (NACTA) and forward /recommend to the apex committee to take decision for trial of such cases in the military courts. The committee would also review all situation/threat spectrum in the Islamabad capital territory (ICT) and take remedial measures and to suggest proposals/ recommendations to the apex committee. It would make recommendations on security/counterterrorism issues as per NAP for consideration by the apex committee and to take necessary action for implementation of NAP, the order says.
It is to mention here that in the next phase, the apex committee would finally decide the cases to be sent for trial in the military courts. The scrutiny committee would be ICT-specific.
Sources in the local police said that other stakeholders in the committee have been circulated the copies of the order so that they could nominate their representatives for the committee well in time.
According to the sources in Islamabad police, it has already selected six high-profile terrorism-related cases from the Islamabad capital territory to be presented before the scrutiny committee. These cases have been selected out of 40 cases under trial at the anti-terrorism courts in Islamabad. According to the sources in the ICT police, these cases include assault on NATO container by the terrorists in 2010 in the limits of Sihala Police Station, murder of Federal Investigation Agency’s Prosecutor Chaudhry Zulfiqar who was ambushed in 2013 in Sector G-9 of the capital falling within the limits of Margalla police station, case of the lone gunman Muhammad Sikandar who held the capital hostage for 6 hours on August 15, 2013 in the limits of Kohsar police station, Ali Masjid Blast Bharakahu within the limits of Bharakahu Police Station, former Federal Minister Shahbaz Bhatti’s murder case who was ambushed in Sector I-8 in 2011 in the limits of Industrial Area Police Station, and assault at police party by the TTP terrorists in 2014 in the limits of Koral police station. However, F-8 district court attack and Sabzi Mandi blast cases are not on the list of cases sent to the interior ministry, the sources added.
Previously, all these six cases were under trial at the anti-terrorist courts of Islamabad. As soon as the scrutiny committee gives a decision on these cases, it would be sent to the apex committee to take a final decision in this regard. Military court for the ICT is yet to be established, the sources said.