LAHORE - The Punjab government can call the Rangers for operations on the pattern of Karachi if circumstances and conditions need it in future.

At present, there is no need to call in Rangers in the Punjab on the pattern of Sindh where a bill was passed in the assembly for exclusive operation of this security body to curb terrorism in Karachi, said spokesman for the Punjab government, Malik Muhammad Ahmad Khan, while talking to this scribe yesterday. He said no similarity could be drawn between the situation in Karachi and the Punjab while the Rangers in Karachi are operating against such elements as do not exist in the Punjab.

Malik Ahmad strongly dispelled the impression that Rangers have no role in nabbing terrorists and militants in the Punjab. Rangers and the army are taking part in eliminating terrorism in the Punjab, Malik Ahmad said, counting the figure of 663 combing operations and the arrest of 1,200 miscreants, which took place in the combined operation of the CTD, Rangers, police and the army in the Punjab over the last six months.

He said it will, however, be the govt’s decision to seek exclusive Rangers operation in the Punjab, but no decision has been taken so far, as the Rangers are already associated with the combined operation.

As to notorious Chotho gang which has surrendered in Katcha areas of South Punjab, he said the area was also a sanctuary of the criminals and had been under constant siege of the security men.

On any major breakthrough after apprehension of two facilitators of The Mall tragedy, Malik Ahmad Khan said the perpetrators are being identified and scope of the operation has been widened. He said crackdown will be launched wherever terrorists and their facilitators take shelter or their presence is suspected.

The spokesman said after a successful Zarb-e-Azb operation, the militants belonging to various organizations are regrouping, using new nomenclatures for their outfits. The nature of their attacks shows they have organized their action, but still they are not able to capture ground anywhere in the country for foothold, he asserted. Ahmad further said there are no two opinions that links of terrorist activities in Pakistan have been found in Afghanistan.

Answering a question on the Model Town killings of 14 persons of Pakistan Awami Tehreek in June 2014 and the publication of the report of the Lahore High Court’s Justice Baqir Najfi on the incident, Malik Ahmad Khan categorically said the law restrained the government from making such a report public. While referring to Inquiry Commission Act, he said the government is competent to seek an inquiry into any incident when it has to find out a thing while findings of the commission are only for the perusal and use of the government and it is not necessary to make it public.

As to what would be the logical end of the Model Town case, he said proceedings of the trial have been halted after the PAT led a private complaint to the court of law. The difficulty is on the part of the PAT and not the government to proceed with the case as the law says the trial could not take place unless decision on the private complaint is made. He alleged PAT Chairman Dr Tahirul Qadri is fulfilling his political agenda by exploiting the Motel Town case.