Cobbling together a peace arrangement for Swat is one of the trickiest processes in the nation's history. It was not an easy task to satisfy all stakeholders. Moreover, there are individuals and institutions having divergent predispositions towards the concept. Therefore, it is not surprising that approval of Nizam-e-Adl Regulation (NAR) 2009 is attracting varied comments. Most of these evaluations are, however, based on respective perceptions rather than the text of NAR. Swat peace accord via the instrument of NAR is a manifestation of democratic process aimed at respecting the aspirations of the people of an area for the type of judicial system they wanted to have. This is what the democracy is about. The accord has come into being through a political process. All tiers of political set-up have endorsed it. Hence, there is a need to respect and implement it, in letter and spirit. Text of NAR, inclusive of previously confidential clauses, indicates that it is a well-drafted regulation. At least theoretically, necessary safeguards have been incorporated to pre-empt any political and judicial miscarriages. If implemented in its intended spirit, NAR has the potential of laying the foundation of a durable peace in the area under its jurisdiction. The process of reaching an understanding on broad framework has been quite painstaking, frequently marred by a step forward and two steps rearward analogy. Nevertheless, it is a manifestation of political prudence, all the more as it has been sponsored by the political parties with known secular leanings. It indeed carries bipartisan support. Formulation of NAR has gone through all the steps of a typical democratic process. Evolution of a homegrown mechanism to address the issue of extremism was indeed overdue. Time has come to amicably close unnecessary fronts, differentiate radical extremists from the moderate elements and the hostage public at large; and give peace a fair chance to take roots. After all people have strived for speedy justice; a genuine desire of every human being and each civil society, irrespective of religion and creed. Fears expressed by India are prompted by typical vested interests and are quite understandable. Afghan concerns are mostly misplaced. Afghanistan should cooperate in neutralising at least a section of extremists. US opposition is out of context as the objective of NAR is indeed the same as enunciated in Obama's recent policy review on Afghanistan that is to differentiate between hardcore ideologically committed fighters and those who are just following the line, either out of some lowly compulsions or duress. NAR is an ordinary instrument of law and is liable to review and repeal, on as required basis. While going through implementation, it would be refined on the basis of field inputs. Therefore, one should not portray a doomsday picture in anticipation. Another objection to NAR has been the point that a country should have a uniform law throughout its length and breadth. Historically, Pakistan has never had a uniform law even prior to NAR. FATA, PATA etc have always had laws based on their local customs, culture and traditions which are, at times, at variance with the mainstream legal system. Furthermore, there are ample examples, including those of the US and UK, where more than one type of law prevails to suit various sates, areas etc. Actual test of sustainability of NAR would come when working level details are formulated. Varying interpretations may be coined by various groups that could trigger irritants. Therefore, the stakeholders will have to watch out and side step petty differences that are bound to crop up. It would be prudent to set-up an appropriately powered implementation review committee to resolve the differences of opinion. We must not ignore the fact that detractors wish to see the process derailed. TNSM has a heavy responsibility to shoulder. Sustainability of peace process depends on its demonstrable capability of establishing tranquillity in the area of NAR's jurisdiction. A tall order indeed Apparently TNSM has the requisite influence and clout. Initial volley of provocative statements by TNSM chief and the spokesperson were indeed worrisome. However, it is refreshing that the rhetoric did not perpetuate. Likewise, encroachment by zealots into Buner district was pretty alarming. Equally prompt retrieval, though partial, indicates that sanity is likely to prevail, may be in a see-saw pattern. Nevertheless, such utterances and activism would further shrink the number of sympathisers of the peace initiative, who are not many. However, at this stage, benefit of doubt should be given to the TNSM leadership as they are neither statesmen nor diplomats. Clergy has always thrived on rhetorical, and old habits are hard die. In due course, counter arguments by mainstream clergy would temper the TNSM ambitions, and hopefully a reasonably conditioned leadership would emerge within a couple of weeks. Furthermore, TNSM does not command a disciplined force, it is just a conglomeration of emotionally charged, (mis)guided mobs; hence, we should expect some aberrations of the sort. Peace process needs a helping hand form all stakeholders. Its success would be a win-win situation for all - Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States; even for India. The key to success is strategic patience The writer is a national security analyst and a retired officer of the Pakistan Air Force E-mail: khalidiqbal7@yahoo.com