Breather for Afghan refugees in Pakistan

The decision was taken following the federal cabinet meeting held at the Pakistan PM House under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif….reports Asian Lite News

The Pakistan government on Friday extended the validity of the Afghan refugees’ Proof of Registration Cards (PoRs) that expired on April 1 this year, to June 30, 2024, to facilitate those who have yet not left Pakistan voluntarily as it presses ahead with its push to boot out illegal foreigners, Geo News reported citing a statement.

The decision was taken following the federal cabinet meeting held at the Pakistan PM House under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

The cabinet was told that this extension would enable the PoR cardholders to have access to schools, bank accounts, and other facilities during their stay in Pakistan.

It must be noted that these PoR cardholders will be forcibly sent back to their country in the third phase of the programme of repatriation of illegal foreign nationals living in Pakistan for ages.

Pakistan has expelled over half a million undocumented refugees in the repatriation programme’s first phase from November 1 till date. The second phase was aimed at driving out refugees holding Afghan Citizen Cards (ACC), Geo News reported.

The ACCs were provided by the Pakistan government to Afghan refugees in 2017, after processing and registering them with Pakistan’s National Database and Regulation Authority (NADRA).

On the advice of the Ministry of Law and Justice, the federal cabinet approved the establishment of an additional special court in Makran Division to deal with anti-narcotics cases in Balochistan province, Geo News reported.

The jurisdiction of this special court will be extended to the districts of Panjgur, Kech, Gwadar, Hub and Lasbela. The cabinet also directed the authorities to appoint the best judge in the special court and ensure effective prosecution.

Moreover, during the meeting, the Federal Secretary for the Interior briefed the cabinet on the progress of the Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) operations.

The Secretary of Aviation, filled in the meeting on the recent measures taken to improve the facilities at Pakistan’s airports, particularly Lahore and Karachi. The meeting was informed that the service counters at the airports had been increased and the facilities were being upgraded, Geo News reported.

The meeting was told that the advertisements inviting expressions of interest were published in national and international newspapers on April 2, with the last date being May 3, and so far several companies had expressed keen interest in PIA.

The meeting also gave the go-ahead to the appointments of four ex-officio members of the Institute of Cost and Management Accountants (ICMA) and approved the decisions taken by the Cabinet Committee on Legislative Cases on April 18, 2024. (ANI)

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