TTP has stepped up attacks: Rashid

Minister rules out presidential system, emergency in country

Our Correspondent February 03, 2022


Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid on Wednesday said the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) had increased its attacks as he ruled out any talks with the militant outfit.

Addressing a news conference in Islamabad, Rashid said he had written letters to the relevant authorities – including the four chief secretaries and IGPs -- to stay alert in the wake of the looming threat.

The minister ruled out any ongoing negotiations with the TTP, saying it was impossible for any government to meet its demands.

He further pointed out that the law enforcement agencies had killed two of the TTP militants in Islamabad.

Rashid also dismissed speculations about the introduction of a presidential system or the imposition of a state of emergency in the country. He also ruled out a no-confidence motion against the prime minister.

“All such things are nothing more than the rumours and being an interior minister I confirm to you that there is no plan to bring the presidential system or impose emergency in the country,” he added.

He further said if anyone was interested in bringing a no-confidence motion against the prime minister, they could pursue it because it is them who would have to gather enough support for it.

“The government has never faced defeat in passing a bill during the last three and a half years.”

Speaking on former convicted premier Nawaz Sharif, the minister described the PML-N supremo as an “unfortunate” person relying on “fake” medical reports.

Read Pakistan asks Afghan Taliban to take TTP ‘as test case’

The minister was referring to a fresh medical report submitted by the PML-N supremo’s lawyer to the Lahore High Court in which he was advised by a doctor against travelling to Pakistan without undergoing a “definitive medical treatment” in London.

“He [Nawaz] wants to deceive the people by asking them to march to Islamabad while the country is facing the threat of the Covid-19 pandemic," the minister added.

He, however, said the opposition could fulfil its desire to march to Islamabad and the government faced no threat by the move.

Speaking about the performance of his ministry, Rashid said 87 new National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) offices were set up during last year in the country.

Out of total 87, 23 were set up in Punjab, 18 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, 11 in Sindh and 13 each in Balochistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).

“Thirteen new passport offices will be set up abroad during the current year,” he added.

The minister said the federal government wanted to open 13 new passport offices in Sindh and the funds were available for them. He added that the delay was because of the Sindh government because it had yet to respond to the matter.

Rashid said Prime Minister Imran Khan was leaving for an important visit to China where he would discuss the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and other matters of mutual interest.

The minister also announced that his Saudi counterpart will visit Pakistan on February 7 and would hold important meetings with the prime minister and president.

The minister also briefed the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Interior about the ongoing relationship between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

He said around 70 Afghans were arriving in Pakistan on a daily basis.

“There is no condition for visa for the sick people coming from Afghanistan,” he added.

 He further told the committee that an investigation was underway into the recent incidents of terrorism in the country.


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