Operation Zarb-e-Azb : 2 years achievements
The fruits of the Zarb-e-Azb are matchless, and the nation is beholden to the armed forces and all other state institutions and political players, who, setting aside their differences on other issues, joined hands against terrorists.
On June 15, 2014 Operation Zarb-e-Azb was started aimed at rooting out menace of terrorism.
The security situation was very precarious when the present government took power. The mosques, churches, markets and other places had become soft targets of the terrorists.
At that time, the incumbent government and the security forces with the mutual consensus initiated decisive action against terrorism. Now, peace has largely been restored in the country.
Especially, people of Karachi are now carrying out their day-to-day activities without any fear.
The phenomenal gains made in the first two years of Zarb-e-Azb became possible only because of a national consensus and single-mindedness among all stakeholders and key institutions for which the federal and provincial governments, political parties, Parliament, the Supreme Court and armed forces deserve immense acclaim and approbation.
The federal government and political parties hammered out a consensus and accorded political ownership to the military campaign; the parliament passed the requisite amendments in the Constitution and the army law; the Supreme Court validated these changes; and the armed forces carried out the operation in an exceptional manner. Every institution earned kudos and congratulations for its role.
The operation was launched in phases and people were provided opportunity to be shifted to safe areas. The terrorists' hideouts were destroyed in Shawal and many operations were carried out in FATA and Swat for establishing writ of the government with sacrifices of the troops.
Intelligence Based Operations (IBOs) and combing operations were carried out in the four provinces to stop terrorists from spreading. Operations were also undertaken against the facilitators with the help and cooperation of the citizens.
During the operation, 7,591 IEDs, 35,310 mortar bombs and rockets and 2,481 land mines and suicide jackets were recovered.
The troops seized about 253 tons of explosive which according to some calculations was enough for the terrorists to make ammunition and IEDs for 15 years.
During the two years operation, about 3,500 terrorists were killed and 992 of their hideouts were destroyed. In achieving this, 490 troops lost their lives while 2,108 others were wounded. The wounded included those who had either lost their legs or arms or eyes or much more.
It was no less embarrassment that a real no-go area also existed in the tribal belt.
Because of restoration of law and order, 61% of the IDPs have returned, while the remaining ones would be back by the end of the year.
During the rehabilitation phase in FATA, schools, mosques and markets were being built and basic infrastructure was being developed and 700 kilometer long road was being built in Waziristan.
The new wings of FC and paramilitary forces were being raised to man the check posts allowing the visitors after proper verification along 2600km porous border with Afghanistan.