By: Fazal Sher
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan Friday rejected the impression of any rift between the civil and military leadership in the backdrop of the recently held Corps Commander conference, saying there was close co-ordination between the two on issues of national interests.
“The government and armed forces are on the same page on all issues and all decisions were taken after consultations,” he said while responding to a question related to a purported civil-military rift during a press conference at Punjab House. To another question about Army Chief’s US visit, he said that there are laid down procedures that Chief of Army Staff takes prior permission from Prime Minister before visiting any foreign country.
“This is on the record that General Raheel Sharif took Prime Minister’s permission before scheduling his US visit,” he said, adding that the Army Chief’s visit to the US was scheduled and he had met the Prime Minister and discussed his visit with him. Similarly, the Prime Minister had held consultation with his cabinet members as well as military leadership before his visit to the US. He said that foreign visits of both Prime Minister and the Army Chief are always in the interest of the country.
“Those who are creating such rumours, should take rest as things are going normal,” he said, adding that differences of opinion always exist and the situation is not like the way as it is being portrayed in media. Commenting on the government’s response to the military’s concerns over poor performance, he remarked: “one side issued a statement and the other side responded to it and now the situation is normal”.
He said that Rs 1.06 billion has been allocated for National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) which would be released within six months. “The allocated funds would be spent on formation of Joint Intelligence Directorate (JID) and strengthening of NACTA,” he further said.
The Minister said that December 31 is the last date for verification of arms licenses and those who failed to verify their licenses by the deadline their licenses will be cancelled. From first of January 1, 2016, FIRs would be registered against all those who failed to get their licenses verified, he said. About the suspension of readmission agreement with the European Union (EU) countries, following misuse by some EU countries, he said that an EU delegation is arriving in Pakistan and he would meet them on Monday next to discuss the issues arising out of re-admission agreement between Pakistan and the EU.
“The European Union has been our development partner but we have serious concerns about re-admission agreement as well and we will make no compromise when it comes to issues concerning the integrity of the country.” He said the previous government had signed readmission agreement with the EU countries in 2009 for repatriation of illegal Pakistanis but the agreement is tilted against Pakistan. “Most of the signatories to readmission agreement are deporting them without verification by Pakistani authorities, and last year alone 90,000 people were sent back to the country,” he said.
The Minister directed the department concerned to impose fines against private airlines for bringing some Pakistanis deported from Greece on Friday. Nisar said that a countrywide campaign has been launched against human smugglers and fake agents and the operation would continue for one month. “The names of 9000 people have been removed from exit control list (ECL) and the name of only 3000 people exist on ECL who are involved in serious crimes,” he said.
Source: Business Recorder