Over 230 US, Indian nationals issued Pakistan visas on Zardari's half-brother's order

Published: March 16, 2017
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ISLAMABAD: More than 230 visas had been issued to American and Indian nationals by Pakistan’s consul general in Dubai in 2010 in violation of the government policy, official sources said on Tuesday. As many as 86 US and 150 Indian nationals had been issued visas during the months of March and April 2010, sources added.

According to official documents, visas had been issued on the instructions of Dubai-based PPP leader Awais Muzaffar Tappi, the half-brother of the then president, Asif Ali Zardari.

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The ministry of foreign affairs took serious action against the consul general, Amjad Ali Sher Mohmand, and called him back without letting him complete his three-year tenure in Dubai. Sher Mohmand was posted in October 2009 for three years but was summoned back in September 2011.

The move, however, was not against the consul general for violating the government policy but was rather a punishment for disobeying Tappi who wanted him to issue another 100 visas to US nationals.

The consul general had flatly rejected the pressure by Tappi and maintained that he had already issued more than 250 visas to US and Indian nationals in violation of the government policy.

The refusal made Tappi approach the then foreign secretary, Salman Bashir, who immediately posted another diplomat in Dubai.

Salman Bashir had ordered an inquiry against Sher Mohmand over his ‘bold’ refusal that annoyed Tappi. Later, the consul general in an interview divulged the whole story. The foreign secretary agreed that the visas had been issued in violation of the government policy but still punished the consul general for his ‘impolite attitude’ towards Tappi.

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Pakistani embassies were under strict instructions not to issue visas to nationals not belonging to the host country without an explicit clearance from the ministries of interior and defence. The ban was imposed by the ministry of interior through a ‘policy instructions’ document dated February 23, 2010. The policy was framed following reports that those who were refused Pakistani visas in Washington and New Delhi had been successful in obtaining them from the Pakistan missions in the UAE, the source added.

Documents also revealed that foreigners who had been issued ‘anti-papers’ in the UAE had been granted visas valid for one year while others had been given 90- day multiple entry visas.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 16th, 2017.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • PakPower
    Mar 16, 2017 - 2:41PM

    PPP has been a scourge for Pakistan, and particularly Sindh, since 1989. It is high time we ban this anti-state entity once and for all.Recommend

  • sunny
    Mar 16, 2017 - 2:54PM

    WelcomeRecommend

  • Faisal
    Mar 16, 2017 - 3:07PM

    Unfortunately this is nothing new for Pakistan. Corrupt officials remain corrupt wherever they are in the world and they don’t care about Pakistan’s national security or priorities. Who knows how many Indian spies got into Pakistan because of this lapse by Zardari’s relatives. The consul general who was unfairly removed from office deserves a medal and Salman Bahsir and Zardari’s family needs to be banned from any official posts for life. Recommend

  • Saleem
    Mar 16, 2017 - 3:25PM

    This confirms all aspects of the Memogate scandal and the issuance of visas to unwanted US nationals on orders of Zardari.Recommend

  • Shahid
    Mar 16, 2017 - 3:29PM

    Visit any place in Sindh and you will see what PPP has done in so many years in power, NOTHING AT ALL! Corrupt to the core.Recommend

  • IMDAD ALI
    Mar 16, 2017 - 3:40PM

    to much serious issue as law does not allow to violate the rules even if sitting PM or president say for this and you have right providing constitution to refuse instead of following wrong directions. why visa were issued to US and enemy country men over than the permissible quota. former president may be asked for that that why he had given unlawful power to his foster brother for exercising powers of president. Recommend

  • Lumdheeng
    Mar 16, 2017 - 10:13PM

    Who are the Indians,got Pakistani visa? Definitely their relatives, might be living in Pakistan. Dont know about US. That is how Indian visas are issued.Recommend

  • kemosabe
    Mar 17, 2017 - 4:56AM

    @PakPower:
    Agreed. Would even venture to say that PPP are several orders of magnitude more inept and corrupt than PML-N though they’re two sides of the same coin.Recommend

  • Proud Pakistani
    Mar 17, 2017 - 4:31PM

    The Indians who applied for visas wanted a better life for themselves in Pakistan – The Land of Opportunity.Recommend

  • Faisal
    Mar 17, 2017 - 5:56PM

    @Proud Pakistani: well said! Actually millions more might now suddenly stream to our border after India’s BJP kicks them out. We need to seal our borders and build a wall! For 70 years vast majority of Indian Muslims stayed patriotic to India and even attacked Pakistan whenever they had a chance (e.g. the imam of Jama Masjid Delhi, Indian actors and actresses, etc.) and mocked Pakistan and celebrated the fall of East Pakistan. Now we should be very cautious should they come running after realizing the reality. Recommend

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