Punjab sidelines forming judicial commission on Jaranwala tragedy

From Abid Usman

LAHORE: The interim Punjab government declined to form a judicial commission on the Jaranwala tragedy case.
Additional Advocate General Punjab, Ghulam Sarwar, conveyed the government’s decision to the La-hore High Court, asserting that the Punjab government had already constituted a JIT to investigate the incident.
It conveyed that it would be unnecessary to form a separate judicial commission.
The hearing was conducted by Justice Asim Hafeez in response to a petition filed by Bishop Azad Mar-shall.
Earlier, the Lahore High Court had instructed the Punjab chief secretary to take a decision in connec-tion with a petition seeking formation of a judicial commission for an inquiry into the Jaranwala trage-dy.
The direction for the provincial chief secretary came from Justice Sajid Mehmood Sethi, when the pub-lic prosecutor responded in negative on being questioned if a judicial commission was formed to look into the incident.
In the plea, the petitioner had requested the high court to issue orders for an inquiry into the Jaranwa-la tragedy by a judicial commission, contending that the fundamental rights of the minority community (the Christians) had been violated in the incident.
Meanwhile, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir on Thursday termed the Jaranwala inci-dent “extremely tragic and totally intolerable”.
The army chief stated this while addressing the participants of yearly ISPR Internship Programme being attended by over 370 students from various universities across Pakistan.
“There was no room for such incidents of intolerance and extreme behaviour by any segment of the society against anyone, particularly against minorities,” he said.
Gen Asim Munir said all citizens of Pakistan are equal amongst each other irrespective of religion, gen-der, cast or creed. He emphasised that no one will be allowed to take law in own hands and those cul-pable of committing such crimes will be brought before the court of justice.
COAS emphasised upon the role of youth towards national development, saying: “Youth is future of Pakistan, which can contribute immensely towards peace, progress and prosperity of the country.”
He also highlighted the efforts of inimical forces towards creating and fomenting fissures, intolerance, mistrust and violent behaviour among the people to spread anarchy and unrest in the country.
“It’s imperative for the youth to discern the difference between truth, half truth, lies, misinformation and disinformation.“ COAS remarked.
In the end, the army chief appreciated the young internees for successfully completing the pro-gramme.