APS Attack

Three years have passed since the horrific Army Public School (APS) attack. The date December 16 itself is a reminder of how we have juggled with policies, and have gone back and forth to decide how to deal with the terrorists. Yet here we are today; a lot has gone down in these last three years. The army, after the attack, decided to launch the operation against the terrorists with full force and we have seen its result as well. They have moved out of their hubs and have dispersed.

However, this initiative is only limited to the armed forces. When one analyses the tenure of the civilian government; it is fairly easy to point out the lack of implementation of the National Action Plan (NAP). NAP was carefully designed to fight the extremist voices and curb the radical thought. However, very diligently our authorities have ignored the need to implement such an important policy.

This was never the plan three years back. The plan was to push them out militarily, while, the civilian government focuses on NAP implementation. At the same time, both the institutions – the military and the civilian government – seem to have forgotten the important lesson that they learnt as a result of the APS attack. This lesson was that there are no negotiations with the terrorists. However, we have now seen the push towards mainstreaming radical elements, urging them to join the political system and accommodating them along the way.

This is a disservice to the promise made to the families of the victims because the only way they can get justice is when radical and extremist elements are made to leave the country, rather than joining the political system and spewing more hatred into the society.

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