ISLAMABAD - The PPP-led ruling coalition is on the verge of introducing major changes in the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997 in order to help facilitate law enforcement agencies as well as courts to effectively curb the scourge of terrorism. Well-placed government sources told TheNation on Monday that the proposed amendments in the anti-terror law would greatly help in plugging the lacunas in the existing laws for nabbing and prosecuting the terrorists. One of the proposed amendments is seeking to shift the onus to prove the innocence on the accused, a source said, adding this had become of paramount importance to bring changes into the existing law to tackle hundreds of terrorists awaiting their trial. Efforts are underway to fine-tuning the proposed amendments ahead of sending them for cabinet approval and the parliament, a senior government official said. Government sources were of the view that these changes were important in the light of the changing situation and difficulties in tackling the terrorists once arrested or surrendered to the security forces. The government ostensibly seems quite touchy to disclose the details relating to the proposed amendments, largely because of reaction from the political parties as well as civil society as some of the changes are against the spirit of the normal law being practiced in the country. Sources said that government came under immense pressure on how to handle thousands of terrorists nabbed during the military operation Rah-e-Raast in Swat and Malakand region. Since the scourge of terrorism and extremism continues unabated in several parts of the country especially in NWFP and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), it has become necessity to toughen the existing law. Sources further said that these changes would not only help the government in tackling the terrorists already in custody but would also provide legal framework for such cases in future. They cited a large number of cases either pending with prosecution or courts giving legal relief to accused terrorists primarily for major loopholes in the existing laws dealing to curb terrorism in the country. Official sources conceding these developments said that Ministry of Law was actively busy in fine-tuning the proposed amendment by taking on board all the relevant stakeholders including the law enforcement agencies.