Sindh to deport 1,600 illegal immigrants: Haris

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KARACHI: Around 1,600 illegal Afghan immigrants have been caught during the ongoing crackdown and will be deported to their country, said Caretaker Minister for Home and Prisons Brig (retd) Haris Nawaz on Wednesday.

“Refugees are housed in camps everywhere in the world, but, in Pakistan, Afghan refugees are living among the local population,” he said while speaking to media persons following a ceremony at the Karachi Central Jail for the distribution of the profits earned from the sales at the Central Jail Prisoners Art Exhibition held recently at the Arts Council of Pakistan, Karachi.

“Strict action will be taken against illegal Afghan immigrants,” he said echoing the federal government’s push to expel illegal immigrants. After hosting the Afghan refugees, both legal and illegal, for more than 40 years, “we are now overdone with our hospitality.”

Brig Haris pointed out that the UAE has recently booted out illegal immigrants, even those working for international companies.

He revealed that some refugees were found involved in fuelling terrorism, “we are not taking chances to identify the actual culprits and instead sending all illegal immigrants home.” There will be no compromise on national security.

The caretaker minister further said that the US military had left many weapons left in Afghanistan when they pulled out and terrorist organisations now have access to those weapons.

“We are conducting one-window operation. Police, Special Branch and NADRA officials will work together to identify illegal immigrants, who will be promptly deported,” he said.

An implementation committee has been established to identify and deport illegal immigrants, Haris said, explaining that the members include the deputy commissioners, district police chiefs, representatives of Special Branch, FIA, NADRA, and intelligence agencies. “Our team will deport the immigrants via Balochistan. We are willing to drop them all the way to the border,” he said.

Regarding the appointment of Sindh police chief, who is junior to some officers, the home minister affirmed that there was no senior-junior issue in the force since the selections were made carefully.

Regarding the rampant rise in street crime, particularly robbers killing citizens on resistance, the minister candidly said, “Now we have started killing the criminals.”

“Our police are very active,” he said boasting elimination of suspects in police encounters rather than dragging them to courts from where they get bails and return to the streets. “The law enforcement personnel have received clear orders, and the difference will be visible soon.”

The repeat offenders will now face severe punishments, he added.

Sharing few success stories, Haris said that the suspected murderers of a man and his son have been arrested, while the assailants who allegedly shot dead renowned cleric Maulana Ziaur Rehman have been apprehended too.

There is a clear directive of the Supreme Court to withdraw extra police personnel or mobiles from officers and VIPs and allow them security as per the law. He said that the caretaker cabinet will meet in the next few days to take up this issue.

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