200,000 CNICs fraudulently obtained by Afghans cancelled

Published January 3, 2021
Sheikh Rashid speaks to the media in Rawalpindi on Saturday. — DawnNewsTV
Sheikh Rashid speaks to the media in Rawalpindi on Saturday. — DawnNewsTV

RAWALPINDI: As many as 200,000 computerised national identity cards (CNICs) fraudulently obtained by Afghan nationals have been cancelled, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said on Saturday.

Talking to reporters at the National Database and Registra­tion Authority (Nadra) office at Rehmanabad, he said these cards had been issued to Afghan nationals on the basis of bogus documents, including fake birth certificates.

He said that the data of 1.5 million Afghan refugees was with Pa­k­istan and about 800,000 Afghan refugees were living in the country illegally.

The interior minister said that online visa facility had been provided to citizens of 192 countries and 200,000 applications had been received for online visa in a single day.

“To eliminate the chances of corruption, we have launched online visa service as there are chances of corruption in manual processing of visa,” the minister said.

He said that India had established cells in European countries to spread disinformation abo­ut Pakistan but “we would defeat such disinformation aga­inst our country and state institutions”.

Minister says those making anti-army remarks to be booked within 72 hours

He said that 300 vans of Nadra would visit different areas across the country to facilitate the mass­es and 50 Nadra offices would remain open round the clock. However, after a few weeks, those 24-hour offices will be closed where no one will arrive at night.

The interior minister said that a new police force, Eagle Squad, equipped with latest technology would be raised soon to provide security in Islamabad.

Sheikh Rashid warned that cases would be registered within 72 hours against those people who made derogatory remarks against Pakistan Army.

He said that a case would be registered against Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam Fazl leader Mufti Kifayatullah over his anti-army statements and the complaint against him had been referred to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

In reply to a question, he said that the passport of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif was expiring on Feb 16 after which it would not be reviewed.

Asked about any chance of cancelation of retd Gen Pervez Musharraf’s passport, he said that he had not received any application for renewal of his passport and a decision would be taken when such an application came.

He said that the opposition parties had kept resignations of their lawmakers in the locker and they would not submit the resignations to the national and provincial assemblies. Similarly, the opposition would not boycott the Senate elections and by-polls.

However, Mr Rashid said, the Pakistan Democratic Movement would stage a long march on Islamabad and “we will start preparations to counter it from Monday (tomorrow)”. He said that he had recently visited Peshawar to counter the long march and will visit Lahore next week as the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf was in power in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab. “We will chalk out a strategy to maintain law and order.”

However, he said that dialogue was a democratic process and no political party should avoid it.

Criticising the PDM chief, he said: “Maulana Fazlur Rehman should stop dreaming about Islamabad and should understand the difference between Islam and Islamabad.”

The Pakistan Peoples Party had “defeated” the PDM parties, he said and added that Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari was sensible and had played his cards well. He said that Mr Bhutto-Zardari would find a “good path” for himself but the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz had created problems for itself by using foul language.

Published in Dawn, January 3rd, 2021

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