Maryam Nawaz speaks during a news conference as Shahbaz Sharif and Shahid Khaqan Abbasi look on. File
Tariq Butt, Correspondent
The Ministry of Interior has removed the names of Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif and several politicians belonging to the erstwhile opposition parties as per the new policy of the just sworn in government.
They include Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) vice president Maryam Nawaz, the premier’s wife Nusrat Shahbaz, PML-N senior vice president Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, his son Abdullah and Finance Minister Miftah Ismail from the no-fly list under the Exit Control List (ECL) Amendment Rules.
The interior ministry started issuing notifications for removal of those names from the ECL which had been on it for more than 120 days without any compelling reason.
Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah has said that these names were put on the ECL for political revenge. “There are 4,863 people on ECL, blacklist, 30,000 people in no-fly list. The ECL rules have been amended which will directly benefit 3,500 people.”
Maryam Nawaz has approached the Lahore High Court (LHC) for getting her passport, which had been taken away from it on the judicial order, back to perform Umrah. Her plea comes up for hearing on Monday. Now, when her name has been struck off the no-fly list, a hurdle has been removed in her way to go abroad.
The federal cabinet recently amended the rules pertaining to the ECL in order to provide relief to roughly 3,000 individuals, a decision that the opposition criticised as a move to facilitate “half of the cabinet members”, including Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif.
Meanwhile, leader of the opposition and Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) leader in Sindh Assembly, Haleem Adil Sheikh, while taking exception of removal of 150 names from exit control list said that names of the most wanted criminal involved in NAB and FIA cases are removed from ECL.
Haleem in a video statement issued on Sunday said that removal of names of the robbers of billions of rupees is cheating to the country and the nation because their names were placed in the ECL so that they could not run away with the plundered money.
On the occasion, Shahbaz said he and his family were being victimised for political reasons. "My political opponents are conspiring against me, and that is why fake cases have been registered against me.”
“I cannot blame the entire army for the lawlessness of a few individuals,” he said while addressing via video link to his Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) latest power show in Swat Valley, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province on Friday.
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz Vice President Maryam Nawaz has said that it was better to quit the government than burden people with more inflation, which was compounded by the previous Imran Khan-led government in the last four years.
Sharif has written to the Pakistan High Commission in London for the renewal of his diplomatic passport. Officials said the request letter from Sharif came just a day before the expiry of his diplomatic passport on Feb.16.
The Dubai Criminal Court sentenced a taxi driver to two years in jail on charges of deliberately running over a man while the latter was crossing a street in Al Satwa, causing him a permanent disability estimated at 100 per cent, before running away in his car.
A number of officials accompanied by senior members of the Royal Family were at Abu Dhabi airport for the interaction with PM.
The initiative aims to strengthen Dubai’s position as one of the best business hubs in the world in addition to supporting companies based in Dubai by providing them with logistical support to expand their operations in more than 30 promising markets.