LAHORE – Condemning the killing of innocent people in Quetta and Swat, PML-N President Nawaz Sharif on Saturday came down hard on the government for its failure to maintain law and order.

Nawaz said the government had let the country slip into the hands of terrorists as no effective strategy was in place to curb the menace. Expressing solidarity with the bereaved families, he said: “Such killings have brought shamed on us as Islam forbids such acts.” Nawaz said that it is a matter of serious concern that blood of innocent people was being shed, but the government was dragging its feet over the matter. He regretted the indifference of Balochistan government over such a tragedy was condemnable.

Nawaz said the entire nation is feeling their pain in this hour of grief. He appealed to the Ulema, media and all segments of the society to play their role in promoting sectarian harmony, and discouraging all sorts of terrorism in the country.

Meanwhile, religio-political parties and non-governmental organisations took to the streets to show solidarity with the violence-hit people. The Majilis-e-Wahdatul Muslimeen led a sit-in in front of the Governor House which was joined by PTI Chairman Imran Khan.

Having placards and banners in their hands, the protesters shouted slogans to vent their rage over the unabated wave of terror in the country, particularly in Balochistan. They cursed the government for its failure in protecting its citizens and called for stepped up efforts for peace.

Speaking on the occasion, Khan announced that he was going to Quetta today (Sunday) to join the protesting bereaved families who lost their relatives in the carnage. The protest continues till filling of this story. The Awami Workers Party also staged a demonstration to condemned the targeted killing of Hazaras.

Last Friday, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) on Friday expressed concern over the rise in violent incidents across the country. In a statement, the Commission said: “HRCP notes with great alarm the rise in grisly incidents of violence all over Pakistan. Beginning with the abduction in Peshawar and cold-blooded murder of 21 Levies personnel, the killing of seven aid workers in Swabi, the murder of polio vaccinators in Karachi and Peshawar, the FC operation in Awaran, and now young doctors beating their seniors in Gujranwala, hardly a week goes by when violence of ever more disturbing nature does not make the headlines.” HRCP stressed the need for “soul searching” over the incidents and said that compassionate human beings were the basis of every developed society. HRCP further said that the state was increasingly relying on the use of force and militant elements had also justified bloodshed in the name of religion. The statement further said, “In a deeply brutalised society, violence today has become the standard response to every challenge, or perceived affront. What we see unfold everyday across Pakistan is violence begetting violence, plain and simple.”