GUJRAT: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) is going to establish a camp office in Gujrat for attestation of documents of the overseas Pakistanis belonging to the districts of the division as well as Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).

Official sources said the proposal to open such a camp office in Gujrat was given by senior PPP leader Qamar Zaman Kaira during the PDM government and the then foreign minister, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, had accepted the proposal. However, the caretaker government continued to work on the matter and now MoFA formally approved the establishment of the camp office and started the process for hiring of required staff.

The camp office may start its functioning by the next couple of months in the building of Gujrat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GtCCI).

An overwhelming majority of expatriate Pakistanis belonging to Gujrat, Mandi Bahauddin, Jhelum, Wazirabad and Sialkot districts as well as the Bhimber and Mirpur districts of the AJK have to go to Islamabad or Lahore regional offices of MoFA for attestation of their documents. The camp office would save their time and expenditures.

Talking to Dawn, Mr Kaira said he had floated the idea to open a camp office of MoFA and PPP chairman Bilawal had been kind enough to approve it.

However, he had recently called on the incumbent caretaker foreign minister Jaleel Abbas Jeelani and took up the matter once again with him as a follow-up. Mr Jeelani expedited the process for setting up the office and the staff hiring had started, Kaira said and added that the GtCCI leadership and business fraternity had already offered space in the chamber building for opening the MoFA camp office.

The expatriate Pakistanis belonging to Gujrat and AJK regions have welcomed the reports of opening of the office in their area.

Published in Dawn, November 3rd, 2023

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