By Agha Iqrar Haroon
Islamabad: Khanewal is safe haven for terrorists, claims a reveling investigative report about terrorists living in Khanewal,. Report indicates that terrorists who attacked on Army vehicle on February 7, 2014 local residents of . Southern Punjab. Intelligence sources claim that combing of Southern Punjab has started to arrests terrorists who are involved in sectarian killing and attacks on armed forces and Khanewal incident where one Major of Pakistan army Maj Danish was injured and two soldiers of Punjab Elite Forces were killed is a part of this attempt to strike terrorist hideouts in this area. There are many questions in the minds of people sitting in Islamabad about lists of mosques and Madaris in Khanewal and their role in harbouring terrorists, is Khanewal a hub of terrorists who attacked on Army vehicle and who is Qari Abid who has been arrested during an encounter with law enforcing agencies?
Southern Punjab is known as home of so-called Punjabi Taliban. First serious encounter in Khanewal district has compelled law enforcing agencies to take this terrorist hub seriously because now Punjab government and Federal government belong to one political party and are on same page. Journalists, international media, district administration and police have been sending and writing reports about this land captured by purist and radical Islamists since year 1992 (first report was submitted by a top district administration officer that huge funding is coming from Saudi Arabia and Gulf for the construction of mosques, Madaris and mosques with Madaris. His report was thrown in cold storage because Punjab government was of the view that “this is a “sensitive report” that can spoil relations within Saudi Arabia and gulf state”. Another comprehensive report was prepared by the Bahawalpur division administration in 1997 and then again a supplementary report was prepared in 1999. All reports had same destiny—cold storage. These reports have following important points:
All mosques are Madaris are not fanning sectarian hatred and are not giving weaponry training to youth studying in these religious schools and boarding schools.
Majority of mosques and Madaris are injecting sectarian hatred and are providing weaponry training to youth studying in these religious schools and boarding schools.
Majority of mosques and Madaris are getting foreign funding mostly from Saudi Arabia and Gulf states.
98% mosques and Madaris were established after 1977 martial and Islamisation of Pakistan under Ziauh Haq Rule.
91% mosques and Madaris belong to one sect of Islam
Majority of mosques and Madaris are providing human resource to Afghan Jihad and Afghan War.
Around 32% of mosques and Madaris had Arabs and Afghans as religious teachers while 11% belong to N.W.F.P (Now Khybar Pakhtun Khawa province.
Till last research report prepared by intelligence sources, 99 Madars and mosques were registered and 69 Madars were registered only in Khanewal while registered Madaris in Rahim Yar Khan were 310 and registered mosque were 106. Rahim Yar Khan as indicated in report was the Operational Hub of these institutions. Registration is important for such institutions because of getting funding. Arab world provide funding to those institutions that are registered with provincial authorities. However reports indicated that almost double of registered mosques and Madaris were also present in Khanewal as “Satellite institutions” of registered institutions. Therefore there was no proper data available about non-registered mosques and religious schools.
During the time of Rehman Malik as Federal Interior Minister, federal intelligence agencies in several reports claimed that suicide bombers are trained in Southern Punjab and militants are running franchises under the Taliban brand name including the officially banned Sipah-i-Sahaba and Lashkar-i-Jhangvi and these splinter groups are a clear threat to the State of Pakistan. The Punjab government vociferously rejected reports. Since restoration of provincial government of Punjab after martial of late Ziauh Haq, there is practically only one political party in power till now that is Pakistan Muslim League of Mian Nawaz Sharif who is again Prime Minister of Pakistan and his brother is Chief Minister Punjab. Both brothers understand and know undercurrent of presence of radical forces in Southern Punjab and some media houses claim that they have cordial contact and relations with Punjabi radicals.