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Editorial: How to address security and education challenges?

The ongoing war on militancy remains inconclusive until there is a stern pressure of those who train, support, feed and shelter Afghan militants. It also remains inconclusive until security mechanism is honed and intelligence network spurred. As security situation has been deteriorating across the country, but particularly in southern Helmand and eastern Kunar provinces there is intense need of security mechanism revamp.

A number of locals and security officials in Nawzad district of southern Helmand province said Friday that if security situation goes unaddressed the district will collapse and sooner will be taken over by the Taliban. Talking on security situation, the Governor of the province Sayed Murad Sadaat said that it’s no secret that security situation has been very much deteriorated. Talking on the current situation in Helmand, President Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai vowed Friday that his administration will take effective measures. Reinforcements should be sent in there. The factors being blamed for deteriorating security situation are non-deployment of additional troops, keeping the area deprived of development projects, extreme vicious circle of poverty, and the porous Durand Line, which is being exploited by militants for intrusive activities. If the government wants to successfully tame militancy there, all the responsible factors should be kept in mind while chalking security plans out. As a resident of the area puts it all the schools in the district are shut down because of militants’ infestation. Locals say if the situation remains the same the day is not so far they will flee the area. But is this the remedy? And for how long people will face the arduous escape for relative safety? And for how the coward militants will keep civilians as their shields and keep masquerading as civilians? Moreover, this is not only Helmand where security situation has been chaotic, but Kunar has been also bleeding. Hundreds of residents have fled the province. Sar-i-Pul province is also under threat from insurgents.
A public representative said Friday that as many as 50 schools are under Taliban threat. Schools located in Kohistan and Sancharak districts face militant threat as the two areas are under Taliban’s influence. As during the past few months security situation has worsened that much as it now calls on the government to be on its toes and ramp up measures. By looking at security situation around the country what comes to our minds is an English proverb that says “a stitch in time saves nine.” Similarly if the government put its efforts in just covering one front in time it will prevent more work later. Therefore, there shouldn’t be any letup in security measures. The government may take long in overhauling peace dialogue mechanism, but it should never tolerate any lapse and delay in its security designs and war on militancy. Here delay means suicidal neglect. The government should also address the challenge of militancy from education front.
By investing in education the government can prevent hundreds of children from becoming militants as a child away from education is either at work, prone to different abuses, or a scavenger, or being reared in the hands that don’t allow peace in the country to thrive. It’s no denying fact that no other investment yields the outcrop as great as investment in education. An educated workforce and youth are the stronger foundation of every community and the future of every economy. We need to stop thinking that education is only meant for getting good jobs rather we should develop this thinking that it’s a change agent and a mindset which enables us to get rid of militancy without the use of bullets.

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