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Nadra temporarily unblocks 165,000 suspected CNICs [The Nation] 04 May, 2017

ISLAMABAD - The National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) has temporarily unblocked 1,65,000 suspected CNICs for further review while 1,78,000 blocked CNICs of confirmed aliens would also be reviewed under a policy of the interior ministry.

NADRA on Wednesday informed the Senate Standing Committee on Interior that the interior ministry had approved a mechanism, through a notification, for the review of around 3,52,000 blocked (routine and complex cases) Computerised National Identity Cards (CNICs). Out of 3,52,000 CNICs, 1,74,000 suspected CNICs, also known as routine cases, were temporarily blocked by the authority on some suspicions and 1,78,000 were permanently blocked, known as complex cases, on the recommendations of the intelligence and security agencies. About complex cases, the agencies had reported that these were confirmed aliens, the authority claimed.

According to NADRA, all those complex cases which could not be cleared through this new mechanism would be permanently cancelled.

DG (Operations) Brigadier (Retd) Nisar Ahmed informed the committee that out of 1,74,000 temporarily blocked CNICs, 1,65,000 had been unblocked temporarily since April 19 — the date of issuance of notification of the interior ministry, for a period of 60 days. 

NADRA itself will review these cases and notices are being sent to these card holders to produce at least one out of seven documents, as mentioned in the notification, for the clearance of their CNICs. While 178,000 permanently blocked cases known as complex cases would be reviewed by the district level committees headed by respective deputy commissioner and the MNA concerned would oversee its affairs.

According to the notification issued by the ministry, the mechanism for review of blocked CNICs has been formed in the light of the parliamentary committee headed by Deputy Speaker National Assembly. The committee was formed by the federal government on January 5 this year following complaints of many lawmakers, mostly from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Balochistan and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), that CNICs of number of voters had been blocked despite the fact that they were Pakistanis. The lawmakers are complaining for more than three years.

The notification says that the district review committee will be comprised deputy commission/political agent, district police officer, assistant director NADRA and one representative each from Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB). Blocked CNICs would be cleared if the applicant will provide one or more of the following documents, including land record registered prior to 1978, domicile certificate issued prior to 1978, pedigree issued by the Revenue Department, government employee certificate of blood relative employed before 1990, verified educational certificates issued prior to 1978, passport issued prior to 1978 or any other document issued by the government of Pakistan prior to 1978, including arm licence, driving licence or manual national identity card.

The notification, available with The Nation, says that NADRA will decide on temporary cases from six working days to 30 days while the District Level Committee will decide on complex cases within 30 cases.

Chairman NADRA Usman Yousif Mubin, who first got reprimand from the committee for being late, said that perhaps Pakistan had the largest number of aliens in the world because of the porous border.

The members of the committee also complained that the NADRA officers were using delaying tactics in resolving the issue of residents of their respective constituencies and even didn’t bother to attend their phone calls.

Chairman Committee MNA Rana Shamim Ahmad Khan strictly recommended that all officers of the authority would attend the calls of lawmakers or call back in case of emergency or otherwise they would have to appear before the committee for explanation.

The committee recommended that interior ministry itself should hold an inquiry into the allegations of harassment by female official of NADRA against its high-ups and complete the inquiry within two weeks. The ministry would also complete pending inquiries of the authority against the female official.

Director FIA Islamabad Mazhar Kakakhel in his briefing about the Islamabad airport thrashing incident said that the two female foreigners got flared up because the lady official of FIA at the immigration counter created hurdles in processing their immigration clearance following an exchange of hot words on demand of toilet tissues from the former. He admitted that the initial inquiry held into the incident was flawed.

The final inquiry had recommended action against Shift In-charge Inspector Nadeem and his case had been sent to DG FIA for action while the FIA lady official Ghazala who thrashed the women had been dismissed from service, he said. Action is being taken against another lady constable Noshila who teased the women at the counter.

About the video recording of the movement of women by another male FIA official, the director said, phone was not allowed in the immigration area and proper action was being against him. He said that the incident caused bad repute to Pakistan on international level as one million people viewed the thrashing incident on YouTube and Indian TV channels aired the incident for 0.5 million times.

The committee showed grave concerns over the negligence of Ehtisham Shahid, PSO to Chairman NADRA and recommended that the officer should be removed from his post and departmental inquiry shall be initiated against him for giving no response to its members over some official affairs.


This news was published in The Nation newspaper. Read complete newspaper of 04-May-2017 here.

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