PML(N) and ANP members almost came to blows on Thursday after the latter made accusations based on a newspaper item about Pashtuns being discriminated against in the Punjab by its police who arrested them and forced them to leave Lahore. Though the ANP would probably like to portray itself as the sole representative of Pashtuns, other Pashtun members also joined the bandwagon when the protest focused on the PML(N)s Abid Sher Ali, who also criticised the ANP. A scuffle was only avoided by the House recessing for Maghrib prayers, and even after that, the situation was not wholly controlled until Interior Minister Rehman Malik, who belongs to neither party, assured the ANP legislators that he would talk to Punjab police officials on the issue. It is ironic that Mr Malik gave this reassurance, because it was he, by speaking about Punjabi Taliban, who led in giving a provincialist tinge to the War on Terror. The latest ANP action indicates that there is a deliberate attempt to give the War a provincialist angle, adding another factor pitting the countrys most populous province against the others. This exposes the true motive of the War as being to weaken the federation of Pakistan, among other things. Thus it would not be right to dismiss this latest outburst as coming from a party with an old provincialist agenda. Just as they are allies of the PPP in government, they are allies in this conspiracy to turn the War on Terror into a provincialist struggle. The ANP should be careful of Afghanistan, or rather of any objective examination of its role there in general, but more specifically during the Soviet invasion in the last quarter of the last century, and from which so much harm has flowed, including the War on Terror. Such an examination would reveal as great a failure to analyse the situation on ground as it is currently displaying by trying to convert the War on Terror to its own provincialist aims. As for the police in Punjab, they need to show sensitivity and not undermine efforts to nab terrorists by indulging in provincialism. Terrorists have no specific ethnic or religious composition and the police should keep this in mind especially in these critical times.