Twin cities put on high alert

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3 arrested; Nisar supervises security at campuses

Zubair Qureshi/Sophia Siddiqui

Islamabad—Police and security agencies have beefed up security at key installations and some parts of the federal capital in order to thwart any backlash from the terrorists after the Army Chief Gen Raheel Sharif’s approval of the death sentence of 11 high-profile terrorists here Wednesday. They were convicted by a military court.
The intelligence agencies have also issued security alerts in the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad. Terrorists might carry out subversive activities in the Red Zone and a five star hotel.
Terrorists could target educational institutions including Quaid-e-Azam University, Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU), National University of Science & Technology (NUST) and National Defence University while in Rawalpindi they could target Fauji Tower, Arid Agriculture University etc to avenge the convictions, the security advisory issued to these institutions has warned.
Rangers and security forces have been deployed at schools situated outside the main double road in the Sector H-8. Similarly extra police deployment was observed at key locations including Serena Hotel, Marriott, at all the entrance points to the Red Zone and the Diplomatic Enclave.
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar supervised security arrangements at the campuses. The interior minister visited Allama Iqbal Open University at 8:30am to supervise security measures, the sources said adding picket points on important roads have been strengthened.
The sources said that at least three terrorists have been arrested during operation in Rawalpindi. They have been shifted to an undisclosed location for further interrogation. Besides arms and ammunitions, maps of the two cities have also been found from them, sources told Pakistan Observer.
According to reliable sources, some terrorists had managed to enter Quaid-i-Azam University Tuesday night but due to timely intervention by the security forces, they were immediately apprehended.
Sources say, the terrorists may use Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Device (VBIED) to target the main installation and to prolong the duration of the attack, they could resort to firing in the wake of the VBIED attack.
While talking to the Pakistan Observer, principal of a top-level private educational institute disclosed that he received a letter from the district administration that his school besides the other educational institutions of the city was under threat of a terrorist attack. “I have been asked to beef up the security and have a close eye on visitors and the pedestrians outside the school building,” said the principal while requesting not to be named.
Meanwhile, Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) has also issued an advisory to all 400 schools and colleges working under it to maintain security measures and take care of the students and staffs.
“We are committed to giving our best despite the security alerts by the police and security agencies and would ensure students and their parents don’t take any negative effect of these warnings,” said a senior official of the FDE. She however expressed her concerns if the environment of fear continues it may have negative impact on the morale of the students as well as teachers.
Meanwhile, Punjab Home Department has also issued directions for fool proof security of all the Metro Bus terminals and its travelers. Additional Home Secretary Shahid Nasir Raja, Superintendent of Police (SP) Sikander Hayyat and other officials were present on the occasion.
According to a handout, the additional home secretary said that the security of Metro Bus Stations must be ensured and steps are being taken to beef up the security further. He said that flaws detected during the inspection would be removed through better coordination adding that the commuters should help security personnel to avoid any untoward incident.
All the available resources would be utilised for proper security arrangements and missing facilities, gadgets and security personnel with latest weapons would be deployed at the Metro Bus terminals.

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