GUJAR KHAN: Urging people to cooperate in re-verification of computerised national identity cards, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said on Saturday that no one would be asked to visit an office of the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) unless their CNIC was found suspicious.
Speaking at a press conference in Kallar Syedan, he said: “The re-verification of CNICs is a national duty. I am committed that there can be no compromise on the security of the country and the nation.
“We earlier completed the task of verification of mobile phone Sims (subscriber identity modules) through a biometric system and we will complete verification of family trees with the same zeal.”
The minister said a mechanism was being developed to facilitate people in the re-verification process and only holders of ‘suspicious’ CNICs would be called to Nadra offices to clarify their position.
In reply to a question, he said there might be some flaws in the system but improvement had been made in Nadra in recent years.
Nisar says heads of 25m families will be asked to verify family trees
He warned that there was no place for corrupt persons in sensitive institutions like Nadra because it caused unspeakable loss to the security and dignity of the country.
Giving details of the CNICs cancelled because of security concerns during his stint as interior minister, he said that only 26 cards had been cancelled in 2011 and 493 in 2012, while the number increased to 6,062 in 2013, rising further to 22,361 in 2014 and 96,689 last year. Another 111,540 CNICs were cancelled during the past five months, he said.
He said 614 employees found guilty of corruption had been sacked from Nadra and 65 of them had been arrested.
Similarly, during 2010-12, only 361 passports were cancelled, while the figure for the past two and a half years was 29,000, he said.
“Under the previous governments, nobody was bothered and no concrete step was taken to curb such illegal activities,” he alleged.
In the first phase of verification, Nadra will send family trees to 25 million heads of families, asking them to verify their members.
“It is a question of safeguarding the state. We will carry out re-verification of all identity cards in six months, while two months will be given to those who have fake identity cards and passports to get them blocked,” the minister said.
He said he had given two months to officials of Nadra and the Passport Office who had helped issue the bogus documents to divulge information about them.
No action will be taken against those voluntarily revealing or identifying fake cards and passports during the period.
Otherwise, legal action will be taken and holders of fake identity cards or passports can face seven-year imprisonment and officials responsible for issuing the documents 14-year jail.
Chaudhry Nisar said that those giving information about foreigners with Pakistani identity cards or passports would be given a reward of Rs10,000 for each authentic case. “A helpline is being set up for the purpose.”
He said the National Counterterrorism Authority was working to combat the menace.
When asked about an allegation of PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari that he had launched a campaign to become the premier during the ongoing absence from the country of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Chaudhry Nisar said the opposition party’s chief was not a child but lacked political awareness.
No one could take the prime minister’s position in the parliamentary form of government, he said.
The minister said a big hospital would be built at Chaklala, while work on a Rs1.5 billion project in Wah was under way.
Chaudhry Nisar said he planned to launch development projects of billions of rupees in his National Assembly constituency in the coming months and funds would also be given to local bodies representatives of Kallar Syedan.