Civil-mily huddle mulls strategy to curb mob killings after Sialkot riot

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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan addressing the launching ceremony of Kamyab Sports Drive, here Monday. - PID photo

Monitoring Desk

ISLAMABAD: The civil and military leadership has expressed resolve to curb mob killings in the country days after a Sri Lankan national was brutally lynched by an angry crowd hundreds over blasphemy allegations in Sialkot.
The decision was taken in a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday to review the overall security situation in the country, according to a statement issued by the PM Office.
The meeting was attended by Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yousaf, Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and other senior military and civil officials.
The meeting expressed serious concern over the cruel act of killing of Sri Lankan national Priyantha Diyawadanage in Sialkot last Friday and expressed the resolve to bring the perpetrators to justice.
The participants of the meeting were of the view that individuals and mobs cannot be allowed to take the law into their hands and such incidents cannot be tolerated. “Therefore, a comprehensive strategy shall be implemented to curb such incidents and strict punishments to all the perpetrators shall be ensured,” read the communiqué.
The participants also praised the bravery and courage of Malik Adnan who endangered his own life to protect the foreign national from the violent mob. They also conveyed deepest condolences to the family of late Priyantha Diyawadanage.
Earlier in the day, the remains of the Sri Lankan national were repatriated to Colombo from Lahore airport with state honours.
Prime Minister’s Special Envoy for Interfaith Harmony Hafiz Tahir Mahmood Ashrafi and Punjab Minister for Human Rights Ejaz Alam Augustine along with the officials of the Sri Lankan consulate were present at the airport.
Punjab Chief Minister Usman Bazdar was supposed to dispatch the body of the Sri Lanka national, but he could not reach the airport due to a “busy schedule in Islamabad”.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday launched the Kamyab Jawan Sports Drive after lighting a torch at an impressive ceremony at Jinnah Stadium in Islamabad.
The government has initiated four projects under the drive, worth Rs4 billion, to keep the youth engaged in extracurricular and sports activities.
The premier stated that the talent hunt program is aimed at preparing the youth for international competitions and added that centres of excellence will be established to polish the talent of Pakistani youth in different fields.
Imran said a new sports policy has also been formulated to rid the old system of mafias.
The premier said that about 70 per cent of the country’s population is younger than the age of 30 and it has been decided to spread the network of grounds across the country and playgrounds will be established in each union council.
NNI adds: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday accorded in-principle approval to the concept plan of ‘Ecological restoration of the Indus Basin for a climate resilient future’.
The decision was taken as the prime minister chaired the fourth meeting of the Committee on Climate Change.
The concept plan comprises conservation and pollution control measures to be taken in up-stream, Indus plain and downstream of the Indus River Basin.
A detailed plan will be completed within four months for approval and implementation and will provide the vision and an action-based framework to integrate current initiatives and develop new initiatives to fill the gaps.
The meeting also accorded approval for concept proposal for ‘Nature policy-based budgetary support’ by the World Bank that will accelerate innovative green financing for development projects in the country.
The meeting was briefed that air pollution problems started from November, which was the driest month that affected most areas of Punjab. Moreover, violations of the Indus Water Treaty have adversely impacted the bio-diversity of Indus River Basin in Pakistan.
The prime minister emphasized urgent long-term planning for urban areas where environmental issues including loss of green cover, sewerage treatment, solid waste management, and air pollution need an immediate solution.
He said climate change adaptation measures were required to provide a safe environment to our coming generations.
He said that the government’s Clean & Green Pakistan initiative was launched with our youth in mind and that the responsibility of providing a clean future rests on the shoulders of the present generation.
The prime minister highlighted that Pakistan’s contributions to global environmental pollution sources were negligible but the impacts of climate change are huge for Pakistan. He said that “Pakistan is not part of the problem yet we want to be part of the solution”.