The truck bomb blast in Lahore on Monday night that claimed a life and injured over 45 people appears to be a result of criminal negligence. According to details, the explosives-laden truck was carrying fruit and some eye witnessed disclosed that the truck was parked at the same place from last three days. It seems sheer negligence. Particularly after looking at the fact that concerned intelligence authorities had warned on August 1 about a possible similar attack. Report of intelligence agencies was comprehensive and it even mentioned that terrorists may hide explosive devices in fruit or vegetable stands. Locals were also found saying that they had informed authorities about the suspicious truck which was parked there from last few days, but authorities remained unmoved.
It is ironic that despite such clear warning, authorities appeared to have taken no action. It was not the very first incident of its kind, even in the past we have witnessed that after a massive terrorist incident, reports of intelligence agencies appear in media mentioning the threats of terrorist attacks.
Although Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s often claims to make Lahore a safe city but reality seems quite different, it was fourth major terrorist incident in the provincial capital. The incident seems more alarming after knowing that Former Prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s cancelled Sunday rally was to pass through the same route. Now provincial government will have to make strict security arrangements to secure the GT Road rally especially given the intelligence concerns about security on the occasion.
In case of intelligence warnings, timely action could have prevented the gory terrorist attacks. It seems there is not proper coordination among law enforcing institutions. There is also need to enhance intelligence sharing among different federal and provincial agencies working against terrorists. Punjab government needs to introduce reforms in order to enable the police to work in a proper and meaningful coordination with the provincial Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) and other relevant institutions especially the intelligence agencies.
Provincial government must take this incident as a reminder to figure out the loopholes in the security. Improving infrastructure, building roads and bridges are vital but public safety must have been the top most priority of government.
Intelligence report shows, timely action could have prevented the sad incident.