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Operation Raddul Fasad: Pakistan’s Journey from Terrorism to Tourism

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Today, Pakistan is one of the countries in the world that attracts tourists from around the globe to see its natural beauty and enchanting scenery.

In July this year, the world’s leading website Wikicampers shared beautiful photos of the Karakoram Highway on its website, adding to the list of the world’s most beautiful highways.

This peace and credibility of the world came from Operation Raddul Fasad carried out to eradicate the terrorists who are wreaking havoc. The success of Operation Raddul Fasad under the leadership of Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa is undoubtedly a great achievement.

There are many turning points in the lives of nations. Thanks to brave, determined, far-sighted and understanding leadership, nations emerge from difficult situations. Such a turning point was the beginning of Operation Raddul Fasad.

Operation Raddul Fasad was launched on February 22, 2017 under the leadership of Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa. The operation was launched across the country instead of in a specific area. The strategic objective of Operation Raddul Fasad was a peaceful, stable and normal Pakistan, a Pakistan in which the people’s confidence in the state was restored and the freedom of action of terrorists and evil elements was abolished and rendered ineffective. The offensive was launched when terrorists sought refuge across Pakistan after destroying their infrastructure in the tribal districts and inflicting heavy losses in various operations. Terrorists and their facilitators were engaged in failed attempts to paralyze lives by targeting cities, towns, villages, schools, madrassas, places of worship, business centers, and even children and women.

Raddul Fasad was launched under a two-wheeler strategy.

  • First Counterterrorism Domain
  • Second Counter Violent Extremism Domain

There are three main components to a counterterrorism strategy.

۔ The use of force is at the discretion of the state only.

۔ Stabilization of Western Zone through effective border management system.

۔ And the elimination of terrorist support bases across the country.

One thing that is clear about the strategy to end violent terrorism is that any ideology can only be countered with a superior ideology and an effective argument. This includes implementing the National Action Plan, integrating the tribal areas into the national mainstream, and overcoming the causes of extremism through full support of government efforts in education, madrassa and police reforms.

۔ A detailed review of Raddul Fasad must mention Pakistan’s grand strategy in the war on terror. The successful war on terror consisted of four phases: Clear, Hold, Build, and Transfer.

From 2010 to 2017, various areas were cleared of terrorists after major areas under the Clear and Hold Phase and state writs were being restored in the tribal areas.

The operation under the leadership of General Qamar Javed Bajwa is a reflection of the Build and Transfer phase which is a real measure of success against terrorism.

Over the last four years, more than 245,000 operations have been conducted under Raddul Fasad, in which CTD, IB, ISI, MI, Police, FC and Rangers took part.

These include some of the largest and most important IBOs that have helped control urban terrorism and dismantled many terrorist networks.

۔ Intelligence agencies worked tirelessly and with sacrifices to dismantle several major terrorist networks, some of which include:

۔ Ansar ul Sharia Karachi

۔ JuA Kurram Chapter

۔ TTS Lahore Chapter

۔ TTP Sawabi Chapter

۔ Intiqam-e-Waziristan Group

And TTS Dir / Sawat Chapter. More than 5,000 threat alerts were issued during these 4 years, and most of them were neutralized before they were materialized.

During Operation Raddul Fasad, Khyber-4 operation was carried out with the objective of clearing 275 Sq Km Rajgal Valley and securing the border.

۔ In North Waziristan, 480 Sq Km, Most Inhospitable and Left-over Areas were cleared through Operation Dua Toi in August 2020.

۔ Much progress has been made on Deweaponization & Explosive Control.

۔ More than 73,000 illegal weapons and more than 5 million ammunitions were recovered from across the country.

۔ During 2017-2021, 1849 terrorist incidents took place across the country.

۔ 1684, Cross Border Fire occurred on the Pak-Afghan border.

۔ In various operations of the security forces, 353 terrorists were killed.

Demining was a particularly important undertaking in the tribal districts during Operation Raddul Fasad, in which 72.6 Sq Kms area was cleared.

۔ Demining Teams have been deployed in the tribal areas through a Dedicated Effort through which more than 48,000 Mines have been recovered.

۔ Security check posts were set up in the tribal areas during the operation. Out of 423 check posts, this number has now come down to 248 (42% reduction) as Consolidation has improved the law and order situation under Raddul Fasad, which are now mainly for the safety of the people.

The honorable and safe return of TDPs to their homes was a patient and difficult step. As a result of an integrated and efficient strategy, 96% of the people in the various TDPs camps have returned home. Various measures have been taken under NAP to eradicate extremism and terrorism in the country. Military courts were set up to bring terrorists to justice. A total of 717 cases were referred to military courts.

۔ 344 terrorists were sentenced to death.

۔ Full action was taken against more than 78 terrorist organizations and leading terrorists.

The terrorists’ assets were frozen and their movement was restricted. Money laundering, extortion, kidnapping for ransom and targeted killings have been effectively curbed.

The positive effects of the strategy of violent terrorism are also evident.

۔ Since 2017, more than 1,200 semi-nationalist extremists have surrendered and set themselves on the path to peace. So far, 4,988 people have been re-integrated into society under the Radical Eradication Program. For the first time, in consultation with the Federation of Madrassas and Ulema, more than 1,800 religious leaders made a highly effective statement against terrorism and extremism in the name of the message of Pakistan.

In Karachi, Balochistan and Gilgit-Baltistan, the intentions of the enemy intelligence agencies to convert Pakistani citizens, especially the youth, to extremism were thwarted. During Operation Raddul Fasad, Pakistan exposed anti-Pakistan conspiracies by enemy intelligence agencies, and provided the world with irrefutable evidence, especially regarding the support and training of terrorists.

The sixth census in Pakistan took place during the Raddul Fasad period. While providing security, 7 soldiers were martyred while 15 others were injured.

Operation Raddul Fasad has improved the law and order situation. Karachi, Pakistan’s economic lifeline, was ranked sixth on the Crime Index in 2014, but has now improved to 103, which is itself a testament to the success of Raddul Fasad.

Improved law and order has led to the start of 831 development works in KP’s tribal districts at a cost of over Rs 31 billion.

Major terrorist incidents decreased by 45% in 2020 compared to 2019.

In Balochistan, apart from CPEC, major projects have been launched under the Government of Pakistan’s Vision Balochistan.

Fully securing Pakistan’s borders, madrassa reforms, the annexation of tribal districts to the KP and the transfer of powers to the police and district administration there are the fruits of Raddul Fasad.

This journey of Pakistan from terrorism to tourism was very difficult and patient. Areas that were victims of terrorism are now experiencing economic activity.

It is hoped that the fruits of all these historic initiatives will be seen in the years to come in the form of lasting peace and stability in Pakistan, Afghanistan and across the region and the resulting development and prosperity.

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Rava Desk

Rava is an online news portal providing recent news, editorials, opinions and advice on day to day happenings in Pakistan.

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