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Event Title: Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights

Event Date: 2018-12-19

Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights in its meeting on Wednesday discussed in detail the procedure adopted to place names of individuals on Exit Control List (ECL) and the legal status of Provisional National Identification List (PNIL) particularly about placing the names of MNAs Ali Wazir and Mohsin Dawar on PNIL or ECL.  The meeting was held under the Chairmanship of Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar here at the Pakistan Institute of Parliamentary Services and was attended among others by Leader of the House in Senate Syed Shibli Faraz, Senators Keshoo Bai, Dr. Mehr Taj Roughani, MNA Ali Wazir, MNA Mohsin Dawar, Minister for Human Rights Dr. Shireen Mazari, Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Afridi, Special Secretary Interior, DG FIA and officials from relevant departments.

The Committee was told by DG FIA that the procedure to put names on ECL takes a period of 30 days and on a Supreme Court order a mechanism was devised for early action on stopping people from leaving the country who were found involved in an offense which resulted in adoption of PNIL which authorises immigration officers to stop people from travelling abroad if their names are in the list on directives of Home departments. It was told that in urgent and emergency cases the list is being used as a stopgap arrangement. It came into force in February 2018 and so far 16 people have been found attempting to leave the country whose names were on the list. The Committee expressed dissatisfaction over the justifications given by Director General FIA regarding the justification and legality of PNIL and decided to probe the matter further in its next meeting.

Minister of Human Rights Minister Dr. Shireen Mazari observed that the process is not clear and transparent and hence anyone’s name can come in the meeting which is not advisable. Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Afridi, while briefing the Committee remarked that some time is required to revisit the existing mechanisms and make them more efficient and people friendly in the ministry and its attached departments.