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Afghan refugees’ children can’t get CNICs: Nisar

Published Aug 11, 2016 06:53am


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ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Wednesday told the National Assembly that the children of Afghan refugees in Pakistan cannot be issued Pakistani citizenship documents.

Answering queries during Question Hour, he said that the children of Afghan refugees were Afghans and not entitled to the privilege, even if their mothers were Pakistani citizens.

Persons who were born in the territories now included in Pakistan or those whose parents or grandparents were born here before the commencement of Citizenship Act 1951 are considered citizens of Pakistan.

Under the law, any person born in Pakistan after the commencement of the act are considered citizens. The children of foreign diplomats and enemy aliens born in Pakistan are not included in this category. Those who migrated from territories of Pakistan to other areas of the Indo-Pak subcontinent for permanent stay after March 1947 shall also be not considered citizens of Pakistan.

Minister says 350m CNICs re-verified in one month under latest Nadra drive

The minister told the house that a parliamentary committee was being formed to take up the issue of the blocking of computerised national identity cards (CNICs) of genuine Pakistani citizens, who were affected during the ongoing drive against aliens possessing Pakistani documents.

In its written response before the house, the interior ministry said that the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) had taken several initiatives to facilitate the general public. Directions have been issued to all registration centres that records should not be blocked merely on the basis of doubt, dialect or ethnic grounds.

It said that CNICs were mainly blocked due to fake particulars/documents, or on the report of a verifying agency regarding clarification of national status of individual.

However, before blocking a card, a legal notice is issued to an individual under Section 23 of the Nadra Ordinance 2000, asking them to appear before the zonal or regional board along with the requisite documents. “If the individual fails to appear before the verification board constituted by Nadra, their CNIC is blocked,” the reply noted.

Later on, if individuals approach Nadra with the correct particulars and documents, their cards are modified and revoked after systematic procedure and board proceedings. For this purpose, revocation boards have been constituted in all zones and regions of Nadra, the reply further explained.

Nisar, however, said that cases of “Confirmed Aliens” are not revoked until their national status is verified by the verifying agency as a “Pakistan National”. A total of 96,579 applicants’ cards were blocked for being ‘Confirmed Alien’.

He said that in just one month, some 350 million CNICs had been re-verified under the latest drive. He also said the response of the public through the SMS had been mind-boggling and 3.5m messages had been received, whereby thousands of intruders and foreigners were removed from family trees.

Published in Dawn, August 11th, 2016


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Comments (16) Closed

Shah Aug 11, 2016 07:15am

They are Pakistani citizens ad per the law. Nisar is on wrong legal path.

Bhai Aug 11, 2016 07:16am

350 million CNIC verified and population of Pakistan is about 200 million.

asif Aug 11, 2016 07:28am

I have meet Afghans having UK passport based on Pakistani nationality. I am afraid it's too late now. Those guys must be laughing on our systems.

Rustam Aug 11, 2016 07:28am

The great initiative of Interior Minister and NADRA and accordingly the nation hopes that the verification process will be completed successfully. However, it seems that the number of CNICs re-verified under the drive may be 350 lacs and not 350 millions. This human error needs to be corrected.

ibs Aug 11, 2016 07:42am

@asif Its never too late. In the past Afghans, Yemenis & Iranians have used Pakistani citizenship to get into western countries. They are not a threat to Pakistan. The illegal afghans are the threat.

humanity Aug 11, 2016 07:53am

350 million is not even the total population of Pakistan. Only 120 million should have ID cards probably.

Akil Akhtar Aug 11, 2016 08:34am


Dr. Khan Aug 11, 2016 08:49am

Treat others you want to be treated yourself.

Merwais Khan Aug 11, 2016 08:56am

Even if you include whole Afghan population into your CNICs, It wont be 350 million because Afghan population is only 31M and Pakistan population is around 180, total will be around 201M then how on earth you counted 350M CNICs ???

Nisar Ali Bhai... Calm down and don't leave comments which has no meaning. I am sure CNICs are never checked or re-verified.

Sabir Aug 11, 2016 09:00am

The Pakistan interest must be protected regardless of short term pressure. The children of Afghanistan born in Pakistan should be repatriated along with immediate
family with dignity as humanely is possible. We totally support the current stand of KP CM & police in this regard.

IQ Aug 11, 2016 09:01am

It is a stupidity for Afghans to ask for Pakistani citizenship.

Khwaja Aug 11, 2016 09:21am

Stock of laughing jokes. These refugees are working in the government agencies.

AJ Aug 11, 2016 10:04am

Why a person born and living in Pakistan for 30 years can't call himself/herself Pakistani whereas a person born to 2nd generation Pakistani couple in US, Europe or Australia who has never even visited Pakistan has a right to call himself / herself a Pakistani?

Get Real Aug 11, 2016 10:18am

Makes no sense! Passport is an identity document...How can the child or anyone for that matter travel without a document?

Aman Khan Aug 11, 2016 12:24pm

@Bhai I also noticed it. Probably, it is 350,000.

asmat kharoti Aug 11, 2016 05:24pm

if you go through the Citizenship act of Pakistan 1951, you will find that except diplomats who have legal immunity and those who are considered the enemies of Pakistan, if they beget children they cannot be considered for the citizenship otherwise everyone is entitled to do so. moreover the term enemy has not been elaborated and no list has been provided to kill ambiguity