Pak SC Asks for Reports on Protection of Shias

Rezaul H Laskar/Islamabad
Pak SC Asks for Reports on Protection of Shias
Pakistan's Supreme Court today directed officials to submit reports by tomorrow on measures taken to protect the Shia Hazara community, which has been the target of two devastating terrorist attacks that killed nearly 200 people in Quetta.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry said the President, Prime Minister and Governor of Balochistan province should submit reports through the Attorney General on steps taken to protect the Shias and to end countrywide protests against Saturday's bomb attack in Quetta that killed 89 people.

The bench further directed the Interior and Defence secretaries to submit responses from the heads of the Intelligence Bureau and other intelligence agencies regarding the gathering of intelligence about the latest attack on Shia Hazaras in Quetta.

The bench today began hearing a suo moto case on the attacks on the Shias.

The Chief Justice acted after receiving a note from the Supreme Court's Registrar regarding the attacks yesterday.

The bench observed that intelligence agencies had failed to collect information about the attacks on Shias in Quetta on January 10 and February 16.

The judges said it was the responsibility of the intelligence agencies to take steps to curb terrorist attacks and crimes.

The judges said the federal government's decision to transfer the police chief and Intelligence Bureau Director in Balochistan were not sufficient to identify or locate those responsible for the attacks.

After the attack of January 10, all intelligence agencies should have adopted "extraordinary measures" to prevent further incidents.

"You should have arrested those responsible as Quetta is not a big area and you could have easily combed it," the Chief Justice said.
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