‘Absence of justice, human and eco rights cause of radicalisation in FATA, KP’

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KARACHI: Absence of political representatives and justice delivery and human rights observance besides lack of economic opportunities and low level of literacy are termed as causes of radicalisation in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), Malakand and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), according to a research conducted by Governance Institute of Network International (GINI) and United States Institute of Peace (USIP) in collaboration with Social Policy and Development Centre (SPDC).
Research was presented in a seminar ‘Missgovernance-Radicalisation Nexus in Pakistan’ organised by SPDC and GINI on Wednesday.
GINI’s adviser MNA Dainyal Aziz chaired the event while experts were also present on the occasion.
GINI’s CEO Usama Bakhtiar said, “Missgovernance-Radicalisation Nexus in Pakistan aims to explore the link between miss-governance and radicalisation in FATA, KP and Malakand division.”
Research regarding KP revealed the perception of high degrees of corruption prevailing among police, prosecution, judiciary, WAPDA, Land Revenue officials, patwaris and tehsildars and civil works officials as well as MNAs and MPAs was to correlate with high levels of support for militancy. Further the greater frequency of statements made by imams (leaders of congregations in mosques) in favour of militants and the more an individual agrees with such statements, the higher the likelihood that the individual supports militancy in KP. Poor delivery of justice services in KP, including the level difficulty faced by complainants in registering an FIR with the police and ensuring its timely investigation is also a cause of support to militancy. Highly illiteracy level and currently high number of out-of-school children is termed to be a cause of support militancy.
Regarding Malakand division, research revealed nostalgia for past system governance i.e individuals who described the system of devolved local governments in Malakand (2001-2009), as well as the system of princely states before 1969, as successful in meeting the needs of citizens of their areas were more likely to support militancy. In particular citizens were satisfied with the architecture for justice provision established under the pre- 1969 system, which was found to be quick and inexpensive. Report further mentioned people who rated national and provincial elected representatives poorly in regard to fulfilment of responsibilities were more like to support militancy. Highly illiteracy level and currently high number of out-of-school children also termed to be a cause of support militancy in Malakand division. Individuals who disagreed with the policies of Western countries and considered such nations to exclude the interests of countries like Pakistan were more likely to support militancy, report said.
People who felt strongly about the tradition safeguarding guests being harboured and those who felt the government had been unsuccessful in defending this tradition were more likely to support militancy.
FATA research revealed absence of political representativesness, economic opportunities and human rights observance could be causes to support militancy. Research said, “Protection of rights, higher monthly income of individuals and larger land holdings factors are intrinsically tied to governance failures that derive from the continuation of British policies by Pakistan government, which yielded undesirable outcomes even in British times, as assessed by their own officials”. 
All three derivers of radicalisation indicate extreme deprivation of economic and political opportunity which the state is obligated to provide.
The research also provided brief recommendations about the findings to address the problems.
According to GINI, the findings are based on a survey of 2,000 households in these areas, as well as Focus Group Discussions with local service delivery officials in these areas, including police, prosecution, health, education and others to identify the supply-side difficulties they face in establishing good governance practice.
Daniyal Aziz expressed said, “10 years, 35,000 deaths and $78 billion in economic losses later, we should recognise this is a national issue threatening not just our growth and development but our very existence”. Informed, fact-based discussion and debate will help us shift the focus from counter-terrorism based on military options to counter radicalisation based on civil policy options. The move from guns to governance is essential.
A panel discussion and question-answer session was also held in which experts shared their opinions as well.

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