KARACHI: Minister for Interior Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan inaugurated two National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) mega centres in North Nazimabad and Defence on Friday, and announced that citizens from areas other than these two could also apply for CNICs there, as long they have the required documents.
He denied an allegation levelled earlier in the day by MPA Khawaja Izharul Hasan, Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly, who told reporters that Mr Nisar should take notice of over 500,000 blocked CNICs in Karachi.
Only 350,000 CNICs were blocked across the country, Mr Nisar clarified, adding that 172,000 of those had been cancelled while the remaining were being examined and verified. He said the re-verification process would take two to three months, after which new cards would be issued.
Chaudhry Nisar refutes claim that over 500,000 CNICs were blocked in metropolis
The interior minister, who arrived in the city on a two-day visit, told reporters that the mega centres would operate round-the-clock. The centre in Defence could process 1,600 cards at a time, while the centre in North Nazimabad could process 2,000 cards at a time, he said.
The centre in Defence had 23 counters — two of them had been reserved for senior citizens looking to process their CNICs, he said. The one at North Nazimabad, he added, had 28 counters — four of which would handle senior citizens and people with disabilities.
The minister inspected the facilities at both centres and later said that considering Karachi’s growing population, Nadra should facilitate citizens in obtaining CNICs without much hassle.
A third ‘mega centre’ was in the works, Mr Nisar announced, and added that it would be inaugurated next month in the SITE area. He also announced that Rs370 million was the total cost incurred on the three centres.
Nadra mega centres were being set up in the country in various phases, to facilitate citizens through a one-window operation, he said. The minister urged the Nadra staff to be courteous and cooperative with citizens, and to assist them in obtaining their cards as early as possible within the prescribed rules. He also requested the Nadra chairperson to respond to all complaints brought to him as soon as possible.
The minister directed the Nadra chief to set up complaint cells at all their mega centres. Employees caught misbehaving with citizens would be sacked, he said, while good performance would be rewarded. He recalled that some 600 Nadra employees had been investigated for issuing wrong identity cards and those found involved had been dismissed from service.
Responding to a question, the minister said the reason for setting up the mega centres was to provide citizens a one-window operation facility to obtain their CNICs. However, citizens with incomplete documents will not be issued CNICS, Mr Nisar warned.
Published in Dawn, April 29th, 2017