Pashtun ID cards not blocked due to nationality or prejudice: NADRA chief

  • Usman Mobin says 40 years old issue won’t be resolved in a day

ISLAMABAD: National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) Chairman Usman Mobin said on Sunday that the computerised national identity cards (CNICs) of Afghan citizens had not been blocked because of their nationality or any prejudice in response to the Saturday protest by Pashtuns in Lahore demanding issuance of ID cards.

The protesters, originally Afghans who have now been living in Lahore for years, protested outside Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Zaman Park residence on Saturday, demanding the prime minister’s intervention in the matter, which arose due to the cancellation of their ID cards by previous government of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

The protesters had said due to the cancellation of the ID cards, they were facing various problems, including those regarding enrolment of their children in schools.

PM Khan had the NADRA chairman to meet the protesters and resolve their issues.

Mobin on Sunday clarified that there were three main reasons behind the blocking of ID cards. Elaborating the first reason, he said that Afghan nationals were falsely declared as family members of those settled in Pakistan in exchange for money, so that they could be issued ID cards but when the property disputes arose it would surface that they are, in fact, not related, so such ID cards would then be blocked.

Providing second reason, he said that some refugee families, who accepted money in exchange for ‘voluntary’ repatriation to Afghanistan, will get their ID cards made again after their return to Pakistan.

Providing third reason, he claimed that some citizens retained Afghan passports while holding Pakistani ID cards, which is why they would then get blocked.

Mobin went on to say that the 40-year-old issue “would not be resolved in a day”. The Interior Ministry was forwarded some recommendations on the matter, he said.

Earlier, NADRA officials had said that they would issue CNICs after completing all legal formalities.


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