6 politicians are on ‘hit-list’: NACTA

By Staff Reporter
Tuesday – July 10, 2018
ISLAMABAD: The senate standing committee on interior in its meeting on Monday was told by national counter terrorism authority (NACTA) that at least 12 threat alerts were submitted to the federal and provincial interior ministries and law enforcement agencies (LEAs), includes 6 alerts for the heads of political parties by name.

According to an official statement, the 6 politicians include Pakistan tehreek-e-insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan, awami national party (ANP) president Asfand Yar Wali, qaumi watan party (QWP) chairman Aftab Sherpao, jamiat ullema-e-Islam Fazal (JUI-F) Akram Khan Durrani, ANP member Ameer Haider Hoti, jama'at-ud-da'wah (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed’s son Talha Saeed.

Meanwhile, other threats are against senior leadership of Pakistan peoples’ party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim league Nawaz (PML-N).

The committee chairman senator A. Rehman Malik, hailing from PPP, asked the interior ministry to ensure fool proof security in the Islamabad capital territory (ICT) and to write to the provincial home departments as well as inspector generals of police (IGPs) to take cognizance of these serious threats and take measures as required.

The committee took strong notice of the fact that Pakistan has been categorised in the “grey list” by financial action task force on money laundering (FATF) and condemned the act by calling it a mischievous act of Indian lobby.

Malik observed that Pakistan is the country that has given most sacrifices in war on terror and still the world is appeasing the India lobby.

He moved a resolution which was passed by the committee appreciating the role and commitment of election commission of Pakistan (ECP).

The resolution was read as, “The senate standing committee on interior appreciates the ECP for taking necessary measures to ensure the elections on time. The committee hopes that the elections will be held fair, smooth and violence free.

“There have been some apprehensions about security; therefore the committee resolves that the interior secretary should ensure fool proof arrangements for the voters, candidates, political leaders, polling stations and especially the heads of political parties on elections day that is (i.e.) July 25th, 2018”.

While discussing the matters of immigration and passport office, the committee expressed concerns on how the “black list” is being managed. Malik recommended that in presence of the exit control list (ECL), the current black list should not be used for criminal cases; instead it should only pertain to offences related to passports.

The committee also suggested changing the name of the list from black list to “restrictive list” and called for the administrative minister to be in-charge for deciding the cases of adding or removing names from the list instead of taking it before cabinet for every case.

Malik asked the interior ministry to formulate compact rules and criteria for placing anyone’s name on the ECL and black list, adding that it is the basic responsibility of concerned authority/department to inform the accused person before placing his name either on ECL or black list within the week.

He said that it is the right of accused to have prior information before traveling so that one can avail the legal right to appeal. Malik also directed immigration and passport director general (DG) to provide the facility of printing passports for oversees Pakistanis in their respective country as oversees Pakistanis are backbone of the country’s economy and they should be facilitated maximum.

Malik directed federal investigation agency (FIA) director general to submit a detailed report to the committee about the corruption cases in immigration and passport department. He also gave directions that inter-departmental promotion quota may be increased that officers with good record could be promoted to higher grades i.e. 20 and 21.

The committee was given detailed briefings by Karachi south deputy inspector general (DIG) about pelting on the procession of PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and by Islamabad police DIG about the threat alert on national accountability bureau (NAB) headquarters and increased security arrangements in its wake.

Malik said that the committee is concerned about escalating threats to political leadership of the country and ensuring their security is the responsibility of federal and provincial governments. He said pelleting on PPP chairman Bilawal’s rally shows that there were serious security lapses which cannot be ignored in prevailing situation.

He directed interior ministry to share the security measures and plans with the committee it has taken for the security of heads of political parties, voters, candidates, polling vicinities and for the full proof protections of those politicians for whom security threat alerts have been issued. 

The committee expressed dissatisfaction over the police report on the incident of pelting on Bilawal’s rally and directed the Sindh police inspector general (IG) to submit a comprehensive report on the incident in the next meeting wherein a representative of PPP will also be attending.

The committee also discussed the incident of Cholistan wherein three little sisters aged 6, 8 and 11 disappeared and were later found dead in the desert. The parents of the three deceased sisters attended and briefed the meeting about the incident that had happened on June 13th. The committee took a serious notice of it.

A Punjab police representative could not brief the committee as he lacked information about the incident and knew nothing about the death cause reported in the post-mortem report. Malik expressed great annoyance on the ignorance of Punjab police and directed Punjab IGP to ensure his presence in the next meeting with full knowledge of the incident.

The committee expressed sympathies with the bereaved parents and ensured them committee’s full support. The parents told the committee that local police promptly answered to their call for help, unlike reported in the media.

The meeting was also attended by senator Rana Maqbool Ahmed, interior secretary, interior additional secretary, Islamabad police DIG security, Islamabad deputy commissioner, Karachi south DIG, national database and registration authority (NADRA) chairman, immigration and passport acting DG.