Lahore blast and beyond

An unfortunate lapse in the law and order claimed three lives and maimed many others in Lahore

An explosive device reportedly planted in a motorcycle blew up near the Lahori Gate on Thursday, and led to mayhem all around

Initially, none were sure about the blast and its origin, as it was considered to be a cylinder burst

Later, it was confirmed to be an IED blast, but still there is a confusion whether it was residing in the bike or left unattended near a cart

Apart from the tragedy, what makes this incident more unnerving, and a looming threat for times to come, is the claim from an obnoxious group apparently based in Balochistan

This act of terrorism has shattered the uneasy peace that was prevailing for quite some time

It has aroused fears as to how effective the monitoring mechanism is, and to what extent such nefarious groups are being pinned down

A terrorist outfit, Baloch Nationalist Army, took responsibility for the blast but a statement issued from them was vague as, it said it wanted to target a bank branch

This casts suspicion on the authenticity of the claim

It may be pointed out that early this month two Baloch pro-independence armed groups, namely the Baloch Republican Army and the United Baloch Army, announced their merger and decided to operate under the nomenclature of Baloch Nationalist Army

A Twitter handle too has surfaced in its name

This is somewhat a new addition to the list of fissures that Pakistan is already facing at the hands of non-state actors

The blast in the walled-city vicinity is a grim reminder that internal security is far from serene

This also brings to the fore the decorum of surveillance that is promptly needed, especially at a time when stakes are up on the western frontier — and the State is trying to broker political peace with Tehrik-e-Taliban Afghanistan and the likes

This necessitates revisiting our resolve in the war on terrorism, and no group should be spared which is on a warpath with the state and its sovereigns

The Lahore blast is more than a warning to put the house in order

Published in The Express Tribune, January 22nd, 2022

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Date:23-Jan-2022 Reference:View Original Link