Senate Standing Committee on Interior has strongly condemned the two separate terrorist attacks in Hazarganji, and Ormara areas of Balochistan and offered Fateha for the departed souls of martyrs. The Committee extended heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the bereaved families of the martyrs of both incidents. The Committee also observed one minute silence in memory of victims who lost their lives in bomb attacks in Sri Lanka.
The meeting was held under the Chairmanship of Senator A. Rehman Malik here at the Parliament House on Wednesday and was attended among others by Senators Muhammad Javed Abbasi, Dr. Shahzad Wasim, Mian M. Ateeq Shaikh, Rana Maqbool, Haji Momin Khan Afridi and Sardar Shafique Tareen. The meeting was also attended by the Federal Minister of Interior, Brig (R) Ijaz Shah, Secretary Interior, Additional Secretary, Interior, Mayor Islamabad, Chairman CDA, DG Passport and Immigration and senior officials from other departments also attended the meeting.
CONDEMNATION OF RECENT TERRORIST ATTACKS IN BALOCHISTAN: At the outset, Senator A. Rehman Malik said our hearts and soul are with the victim families of Balochistan blasts and we share their pains and sorrows. He said that behind terrorist activities in Balochistan, the involvement of our inimical countries cannot be ignored as such blasts are aimed at inciting sectarian clashes in the country to destabilize Pakistan. However enemies will not succeed in their nefarious designs to destabilize Pakistan and divide our nation, reiterated Rehman Malik. He said that the Shia Hazara community of Balochistan is being targeted continuously since long and it is time to bring an end to their persecution by taking fierce actions against terrorists and banned outfits across the country. The Committee sought detail report from Ministry of Interior over the both incidents and directed that the Committee will soon hold a detailed briefing from the Ministry over National Action Plan (NAP) and its implementation.
RESOLUTION ON SRI LANKAN ATTACKS: The Senate Standing Committee on Interior passed a Resolution strongly condemning the series of terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday that killed more than 300 innocent people. The Resolution was moved by the Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior, Senator A. Rehman Malik, which was adopted by the Committee unanimously. He read the Resolution as “The Senate Standing Committee on Interior strongly condemns the barbaric and inhumane terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday that killed about 320 innocent people. The Committee expresses its deepest grief and sorrow on the loss of innocent lives and extends heartfelt sympathies with the victim families and the people of Pakistan stand fully with the people of Sri Lanka. The Committee expresses grave concerns over the newly engineered wave of terrorism in South Asia and unanimously calls upon the International Community and the Secretary General of United Nations to take immediate notice of the terrorist activities of Da’esh in South Asia and take measures to block its further expansion in this region well on time”.
The members of the Committee appreciated the Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik for moving the Resolution and said that the Chairman Committee had categorically stated after the New Zealand attacks, the next target will be South Asia. Senator A. Rehman Malik further said that the Government should take precautionary security measures, especially when the Prime Minister plans to visit China as usually, there are always some terrorist attacks before such visits to sabotage the results. He also directed the Ministry of Interior to inform the committee about the presence of Daish in the country as the government must not remain in the denial mode. He said he has been claimed the presence of Daish in Pakistan three years back. He said stern action should be taken against presence of Daish in the country before it spread like a monster across the country.
BRIEFING BY DG IMMIGRATIONS & PASSPORT: The DG Immigration and Passports briefed the Committee in detail on the organizational structure and working of the Organization. He briefed that the major functions and mandate of the department include issuance of passports, extension of visas to students, businessmen & tourists and also the issuance of Pakistan citizenship certificates, Renunciation certificates and Naturalization Certificates. He said that the Directorate also performs the function of blacklisting i.e. placing in Category B and also the Foreign Control List (Blacklist). He briefed that 173 local and regional passport offices across Pakistan were established under Machine Readable Passport Project (MRPP). He informed that under Phase-I and Phase-II of Machine Readable Passport Project (MRPP), 93 International offices are established and in Baghdad is yet to be deployed. The DG Immigration and Passport requested the Committee for its immediate attention towards the serious administrative and financial problems. He said the Directorate is presently facing issues related to recruitment of staff, posting in Foreign Missions as the Directorate needs policy for pay and allowances, single page data printing in MRP and most importantly the budget allocation. He said the Directorate is facing lack of funds as even two main regional offices one in Bannu and other one in Haripur are under construction since many years.
The Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior Senator Rehman Malik directed the Ministry to immediately solve the problems being faced by the Directorate of Immigration and Passport. He constituted a Sub-Committee under the convenership of Senator Rana Maqbool Ahmed and Senator Dr. Waseem Shahzad as member of the Sub-Committee, with the TORs to make recommendations on the requirements of the Directorate of Immigration and Passport in consultation with Ministry of Interior.
BRIEFING BY CDA & MCI: The Committee was briefed in detail by the Mayor MCI Islamabad, and Chairman CDA on the progress so far made to solve administrative, financial and legal issues of the MCI. Mr. Amanullah Khan, Secretary General CDA Labour Union, CBA also attend the meeting and Chairman Committee, Senator A. Rehman Malik gave him full chance to present his view point on the behalf of employees of CDA. He after detailed presentation, requested that the CBA Union proposes that CDA may be allowed to perform functions for a period of five years in urban area of Islamabad and during this period the rules and by laws and financial sources for MCI be materialized, He added that as new Local Government system is being introduced in the country in near future which is entirely different from the present Local Government system, so it will be appropriate that the Local Government Act, 2015 may not be implemented in the urban areas of Islamabad with introductions of new local body system or he proposed that alternatively the CDA employees shall continue their services on attachment bases under the administrative control of MCI. He further added that the status of employees will remains lien as CDA employees and their services are to be governed under the CDA service Regulations 1992 till their retirement. He said that till the framing and notifying the rules and constitution of Local Government Board as well as establishing of MCI system, administrative, financial matters including posting, transfer and disciplinary actions etc. shall be dealt with by the CDA. He proposed that all the facilities and benefits granted as a result of any MOU, agreement or notifications or to which they are otherwise entitled including the right of protection through Collective Bargaining Agent (CBA) under IRA-2012 shall remain intact. Senator A. Rehman Malik highly appreciated Amanullah Khan for his detailed briefing and said that the Members of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior will look into the proposals. However, he directed the CDA and MCI to immediately resolve their administrative, financial and legal issues in such a way that the rights of employees of CDA shall be fully protected. After listening to the CDA, MCI, and Secretary General of the CDA Labour Union, the Chairman Committee directed that the matter shall be taken up in the next meeting of the Committee.
SUO-MOTO NOTICE TAKEN BY THE CHAIRMAN COMMITTEE ON THE CONSTRUCTION OF FIRING RANGE IN THE US EMBASSY IN ISLAMABAD: Senator A. Rehman Malik, Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Interior informed the Committee that he has taken a serious notice on the media reports regarding construction of a Firing Range in the premises of US Embassy, Islamabad, for which a tender had also been floated in the press. He said that he has already asked for the SOS views of the Chief Commissioner of Islamabad on the issue. He said that the Chief Commission Islamabad has verbally told him that there is no such formal agreement with the ICT to allow US Embassy for construction of a firing range in the compound of US Embassy based in Islamabad. He said that the media report regarding construction of firing rage has created a serious controversy which needs to be clarified in the greater national interest. He directed the Ministry of Interior to brief the Committee in the next meeting of the Committee in detail. He said that no country shall be allowed to violate the laws of our land.