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Inquiry ordered into false family history of Federal Minister, MNA.

ISLAMABAD, October 01, 2009 (Balochistan Times): Senate Standing Committee on Interior has asked National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) to submit a report regarding the errors in issuing computerized National Identity Cards, issuance of Pakistani passport to Indians, inaccurate information regarding the family history of Federal Minister for Population Welfare Dr. Firdous Aashiq Awan and MNA Malik Abrar Ahmed. The Committee has directed to ensure transparency in the whole system of NADRA and warned that irregularities in recruitment in the authority would not be tolerated. It has been also agreed in the meeting that strict action would be taken against human smugglers while enthusiastic ovation would be accorded to the Pakistani family on its return which was detained in Saudi Arabia. The meeting of the Committee presided by its Chairman Senator Talha Mehmood was held here on Thursday at NADRA headquarters and also attended by Senator Kazim Khan, Colonel Tahir Hussain Mashahdi, Haji Adeel, Sughra Imam, Najma Hameed, Gulshan Saeed, Secretary Interior Qamar ul Zaman, Federal Minister for Interior A. Rehman Malik, Chairman NADRA Ali Arshad Hakeem as well as other officials. The Committee was given a detailed briefing about the functioning of NADRA and was told by Chairman NADRA that a plan has been finalized to install Chip in the NICs of the Pakistanis living abroad. He said that implementation on this project would start soon. The Chairman said that Internees at NADRA are receiving stipend of Rs. 6500 which would be enhanced to Rs. 7,000 soon according to the policy of the government. He ensured to follow merit during recruitment at NADRA and said that there would be no nepotism in this process. The Chairman told the Committee that survey is being conducted in collaboration of World Bank to gather correct figure regarding the poverty ratio so that downtrodden segment of the society could be financially assisted. He said that investigation is underway after complaints in issuance of CNICs in Shabqadar and Rawlakot. Every possible effort is being made to remove errors and make this system more transparent, he added. The members of the Committee stressed to resolve the problems being faced by the people residing in far flung areas of Sindh and Balochistan in attaining CNICs and also asked to improve the quality of the paper being used for CNICs. Chairman Committee Senator Talha Mehmood complained of using poor quality paper and several other mistakes in CNICs issuance process and said that terrorists could get advantage of this negligence on the part of NADRA. He said that CNICs, issued by NADRA to Federal Minister for Population Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan and MNA Malik Abrar Ahmed, have incorrect information about their family history. Chairman NADRA said that an inquiry has been initiated against those responsible for inserting wrong information about these figures while case has been also registered. The Committee would be apprised about the real situation soon, he maintained. The Committee observed that NADRA has the complete information about citizens so effective steps should be taken to improve security system of the country. A representative of Foreign Ministry said the government has taken strict notice of issuing passport to an Indian, adding that committee would get report soon about the advancement in this particular case. He said that effective steps are needed to stop drug smuggling to Gulf and Middle East countries from Pakistan as such practices bring bad name to country. More than 4800 Pakistanis are detained in the foreign countries on the allegations of drug smuggling, he said adding that every possible effort would be made for their release. The Committee also appreciated efforts of the government, Interior Ministry, Foreign Ministry, members of the committee and other officials for playing their role in release of Pakistani family detained in Saudi Arabia. It decided to accord warm welcome to this family and ensure the presence of their family members at the airport on its return. The Committee also ordered to submit the report about the reinstatement of two employees who were sacked on the charges of corruption from NADRA. The Committee assured its full cooperation in getting the NADRA funds from Finance Ministry. Talking to journalists, Chairman Committee Senator Talha Mehmood said that every Pakistani is respectful citizen and assured to make every possible effort for the return of Dr. Afia to country. He said that more than half of Pakistanis facing imprisonment in foreign countries are innocent and most of them have also completed their jail term. Senator Talha said that NADRA would submit its report with the Committee regarding the salaries of its employees.

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Publication:Balochistan Times (Baluchistan Province, Pakistan)
Date:Oct 1, 2009
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