ISLAMABAD - Many banned militant groups have the potential of being reintegrated into society and the state must exploit such tendencies to weaken the militants’ appeal in the country.

In order to neutralise violent extremist tendencies and detach militant groups from the terrorism landscape, the government should consider initiating a comprehensive reintegration scheme. These are some of the findings provided in a recently published research-based book “The Militant - The development of a Jihadi character in Pakistan” by counter terrorism expert Muhammad Amir Rana.

The study suggests that under a broader reintegration scheme the govt can offer amnesty to those banned groups that agree to obey the Constitution of Pakistan, quit and denounce all forms of violence and militant activities and shun all criminal activities including spreading hate messages.

The study mainly focuses on the development of the militant’s character in recent years. The phases of militants discourse have completely changed their personalities. The militant of the 1990s and the militants in the making today have huge differences. The first generation of militants was adventurous, but the new militant has clarity of ideology and objectives. A lot of work has been done to understand militancy and terrorism, but very few attempts have been made to comprehend the characteristics of militants.

This book can provide better understanding of the phenomenon as today’s militant experiences all the challenges and consequences of transformation. The book also offers a structural analysis of the militant groups operating in Pakistan and explores that varied forms of militant groups, with a range of ideological and political tendencies, are operating in Pakistan. These groups have many similarities, but it is important to consider what makes them different from each other and where their interests converge. Equally important is to probe how these groups influence each other and how they broaden their ideological paradigms.

The study suggests that analysing these aspects, probabilities for effective engagement with the militants can be drawn, and spaces identified to intervene in order to break the cycle of terrorism. Most importantly, the prospects for a reintegration of militants in these groups can thus be explored.