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Nisar reveals an open secret


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Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. — File photo
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. — File photo

ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan told the National Assembly on Monday that some 100,000 foreigners live illegally in the slum settlements around Islamabad, and many of them were criminals.

“If I reveal the real facts to you, many among you will have sleepless nights,” the minister said in a grave voice during the Question Hour.

“They are involved in all kinds of crime in the federal capital,” he added, without elaborating, when asked about the nature of their crimes. But he did mention Bari Imam and the D-12 sector as their favourite abodes.

That could be a startling disclosure only to the recently elected MNAs. For the ordinary citizens of Islamabad, the presence of the ‘dreadful foreign criminal elements’ in their midst has been common knowledge, and a menace, for long.

“Soon after taking over the charge of my ministry, I initiated a registration process of the people living in katchi abadis, which, after a few hiccups, has been completed,” Chaudhry Nisar informed the house with visible satisfaction.

“In the beginning, people with vested interests created the impression that the registration wasn’t possible, and that if pushed the effort would result in an ugly law and order situation in the city.

“Undeterred by such misgivings, we directed the police officials to complete the registration process or face the music,” said the minister, ruing that successive governments paid no attention to the mushroom growth of the illegal settlements on the fringes of Islamabad.

Now the interior ministry was mulling the options to best deal with the problem of unwanted men in the city, according to the minister.

Without identifying the nationalities of the unwanted foreigners, the minister informed the National Assembly that the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) would be asked to help repatriate them to their native countries.

But the minister accepted that it would be a difficult task.

Already his ministry is working on a project to keep the ‘foreigners’ under surveillance and monitor their “each and every activity”.

Additionally, the ministry is considering setting up special pickets outside the slums to keep a constant watch on the goings on there.

Sources in the interior ministry and local administration told Dawn that the suspect ‘foreigners’ mostly belong to Afghanistan and had been living around Islamabad for quite some time.

“That is why it wouldn’t be easy for the government to uproot them. The notorious Afghani Basti in I-11 is a case in point. Other foreign nationals in the category belong to African and central Asian countries,” the sources said.

According to a city police officer, Afghan refugees have organised gangs and are mainly responsible for crimes in the capital city, such as car lifting, planned robberies and kidnappings for ransom. African nationals mostly go for drug trafficking and fake currency business, he said.

However, the interior minister did not agree with PTI MNA Dr Arif Alvi that unwanted foreigners could also be hiding in the private security agencies but promised “a full-fledged inquiry” into the possibility.

“I assure the house that I will involve all intelligence agencies, including the ISI, to determine whether any agency in the security business employs foreigners and take it to task if it does,” the minister said reassuringly.

Comments (42) Closed

mujahid Sep 17, 2013 07:01am

I am shocked hearing the statement of CNAK that there are over 100,000 criminals kind of living around Islamabad which is shocking & thats why the security of an elite class has been beefed up.He did not inform the house that if any action is going to be taken or some one with the potential like Sikandar could come on the streets of the capital.

Kamal Ahmed Sep 17, 2013 07:36am

With due apology with respected interior minister, this not not at all new revelation. These illegal foreigners are living in shanti towns for many years in big cities under the patronage of certain political parties and connivance of police.These elements are involved in all type of heinous crimes and for long times, we do not have any clear policy and ways and means to control them.Apart from Islamabad, one more notorious shanty town in the heart of Karachi is Sohrab Goat and Karachittes have suffered a lot and will suffer more in coming days if criminals are not uprooted.Now this is time to act with iron hand and root them out by repatriating to their native land.Special task for is required to handle this dreadful situations with dead line.

muhammad farooq Sep 17, 2013 07:46am

Is there no law in Islamabad and its suburbs?

S A Khokhar Sep 17, 2013 07:52am

Like Rehman Malik, Nisar shouldnt run a news service for nation, but actually do something about it! All we see statements without actions.

Anees Sep 17, 2013 07:57am

Thank you Mr. Bean for "sharing" such "top secrets"...

Khan Sep 17, 2013 08:32am

Pakistanis who sacrifices their life for east Pakistan are living in camps in Bangladesh for the last 40 years, police, rangers and army do not hesitate operation against Urdu speaking people in Sindh but no operation against Afghanis? The love and fear of Afghans will soon destroy the rest of the Pakistan

G.A. Sep 17, 2013 08:36am

...and he also just found out that there are 3 million Afghan refugees living in Pakistan.

Adnan Sep 17, 2013 09:04am

Lol. This guy just loves to talk. He still sounds like the leader of opposition.

KASHIF Sep 17, 2013 10:22am

Impressive! Nisar Sahib, this news is really a jaw dropping one....what's the next (scary) setting up another such basti etc.

AHMAD Sep 17, 2013 10:26am

Hope this Government will better and Insha Allah soon Pakistan will be Prosperous country.

Masoud Sep 17, 2013 10:47am

Thanks for the information with this discloser you have taken the masses into confidence. Now please give us the good news of arresting them ASAP

Errie Sep 17, 2013 11:39am

It is plausible that such intervention has been pointed out. Moreover, a quick action is required to mitigate the menace these foreigners are spreading. Best of luck to our interior minister.

Jami Sep 17, 2013 11:43am

So what about Karachi? How many foreigners live illegally here no one really knows that why we have many sleepless nights. We have witness of countless newly settlement of katchi abadis in last five to six years.

Nisar Sahib! Do Something!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tanveer Sep 17, 2013 11:43am

The Interior minister just talks and talks and does nothing..... Nothing has changed even after him taking charge.. Has not fulfilled any of the promises he made.. I doubt his intentions.

RANGO Sep 17, 2013 11:45am

Still dont know what they want, Just take actions why tell us, if its in media we will come to know about these illegal foreigners....

SH Sep 17, 2013 11:45am

We don't have control on our borders like many other things. Can ministry of interior have information how many foreigners living in Pakistan that too without documents, how many Afghan refugee children have grown up here and doing petty jobs or otherwise. No records

raja awais Sep 17, 2013 12:01pm

Now government should take quick action against those foreigners,who are living illegally around Islamabad

Kabulwala Sep 17, 2013 12:03pm

Repatriate all Afghanis! They have been guests for too long! It time they be sent back home. UN needs to take charge.

Aslam Mirza Sep 17, 2013 12:06pm

I am living in Sweden and it is impossible for illegal forneigners stay in this rich country. Pakistan must learn from others countries and hope these foreigners will be thrown away from Pakistan.

ordinary_citizen Sep 17, 2013 12:42pm

Job of a leader is not to only point a problem but to propose a solution and a plan to achieve it. For the first part common masses are enough. What is your plan to address this issue Ch. sahib?

Khan Sep 17, 2013 12:41pm

We want govt to take stern actions against criminal gangs and not just words. Action speaks louder than words.

Ali Sep 17, 2013 12:43pm

Impressive first 100 days of the new government. lot of progress in every sector.

Khalid Sep 17, 2013 01:08pm

Mr. Nisar, sying the obvious has been tha hallmark of your party. After 100 days in the government, you have done absolutely nothing to calm the nerves of the nation. How many of these 100,000 have been arrested and sent back to their countries?. I bet the answer is none because these are the people you requested to leave Punjab alone and bomb other provinces of Pakistan. Shame on you and your entire party. Please remember that you represent the majority illiterates of Pakistan and it shows.

ahmed soomar Sep 17, 2013 01:13pm

What about other parts of Pakistan specially Karachi where you can find Afghani,Begali,Burmee,uzbek,indians and many others living and holding CNIC Issued by NADRA ?

Safdar Sep 17, 2013 01:22pm

We have been hearing all this so this is not news to us but the question is what corrective measure will you take Chaudhry Saab or will you, like Rehman Malik, be remembered as a corrupt and inefficient Interior Minister...

KASHIF Sep 17, 2013 01:54pm

@Adnan : Yeah..talking, and repeatedly wearing his specticals.

ahmed soomar Sep 17, 2013 02:46pm

You are right ,not only in Europe , but you cannot slip in Afghanistan, India, Iran, Bangladesh or any other country of world except few countries of Africa, this is lapse of Home department, I have seen my self agents sitting outside NARA office discouraging illegal immigrant to get register them self and encouraging them to get issued NADRA CNIC , and no body from Home department available to stop this practice.

Awais Sep 17, 2013 04:26pm

This is a very complicated issue now. Many foreigners have been awarded nationality without proper investigation etc. Many afghans have CNICs issued by NADRA. All these should be cancelled and if anyone wants to apply for pakistani nationality, proper measures should be taken.

Awais Sep 17, 2013 04:37pm

In each part of wont find any small business that isnt run by afghans...shops, markets might not find pakistanis but you wont be able to find any market where not even a single shop is run by an afghan.

Bilal Hassan Syed Sep 17, 2013 05:33pm

Assuming these foreigners are muslims, it is our duty to keep them in Pakistan and rehabilitate them. Remember, our nation was formed on basis of religion, and as an Islamic nation we can't simply isolate them. We need to be more inclusive especially when it comes to our muslims brothers.

shafeeq Sep 17, 2013 06:59pm

Mr. Nisar only do the dance in the brute house. We know very well you and your party do not have any good planning for the people of Pakistan.

Shabbir Kazmi Sep 17, 2013 07:28pm

Is the minister there to give concocted information or order action against the perpetrators? We have heard a lot of criticism from PML-N over acts of PPP government. But seem to belong to same flock. Enjoy the term and put people under maximum stress so that they don't get time to look what the politicians are doing. A government that kept on announcing operation in Karachi is still begging TTP to negotiate. Who will establish writ of the government?

muhammad Sep 17, 2013 07:39pm

They are our Muslim brethren they have all the rights to stay in our country as regards killing of few innocent Pakistanis our nation can tolerate it as long as they have been killed by our Muslim brethren however we cannot tolerate killing of single terrorists by any foreign infidel force

muhammad Sep 17, 2013 08:15pm

@raja awais: and what about Karachi should it be left at the mercy of millions of foreigners mostly Afghans

Sandip Sep 17, 2013 09:15pm

India - and by extension the Indian subcontinent has been known for giving refuge to people persecuted elsewhere. But those were for all the right reasons. Now Pakistan has also come to be known as a country that gives refuge to people, but its for all the wrong reasons. This is what happens when artificial constructs take over natural ones.

Jehan Zeb Sep 17, 2013 09:35pm

Very disappointing to see negative comments. Not a single proposal was provided to improve the situation. The gov should be credited when credit is due. I suggest that all security guards should be licensed by respective governments as is practiced elsewhere. only licensed security guards should be allowed to work. Foreign nationals living in Pakistan is not an easy issue that could be solved in short time. It need long time to plan. However, unregistered should be sent back when apprehended.

Janikhel Sep 18, 2013 02:17am

It appears that NOBODY is awake at the border crossings or there is a flat entry fee paid to the border officers, and it has become free for ALL to get into Pakistan, why do anyone need a visa or a even a passport, just little cash, we don't need any enemies, they may be sitting on the main streets of the capital,

Muhammad yousaf Sep 18, 2013 07:22am

@KTShamim: It's disgusting to read Interior Minister statement re 100,000 or more foreigners and criminals are living in the national capital. Chaudry, why don't you take action against these criminal elements. In Pakistan there is so much unemployment and on top of these 100,000 foreigner criminals are residing there. Why don't u make arrangements to have these criminals deported. Just think, 100,000 Pakistanis could find jobs, hope chaudhry, you do something to get rid of undesired residents

Syed Ali Sep 19, 2013 10:11am

@Bilal Hassan Syed: Are you living in 'Fool's Paradise'? Every one knows that overwhelming majority of these illegal immigrants are criminals...murderers, dacoits, terrorists, smugglers, abductors, drug and land mafia, and extortionists. Simply because they have a Muslim name, you want to "accommodate" them. To me they are not Muslims at all, in any shape or form, when you look at their behavior and activities. I suspect that you are one of them to plead their case. The havoc these people have created, wherever they went, specially in Karachi, is unbelievable. Unless our governments deals with them with an iron hand, things would go much worst.

Saad(DXB) Sep 19, 2013 09:47pm

Enough said... Afghanistan got freedom from occupation almost quarter of a century ago. Time for all Afghans to go home. You are not welcome in Pakistan

Asman Sep 20, 2013 02:37am

He forgot the criminals who occupy the government.

Asman Sep 20, 2013 02:54am

He forgot about the criminals who occupy the government