Now on sale: Pakistani visas

Published: December 8, 2010
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Diplomats in certain missions making a windfall accepting bribes from those on the blacklist.

Diplomats in certain missions making a windfall accepting bribes from those on the blacklist.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistani diplomats abroad are allegedly involved in issuing visas for financial consideration to foreigners blacklisted by our intelligence agencies, well-placed sources told The Express Tribune.

Alarmingly, most of the blacklisted persons, who managed to obtain Pakistani visas, were said to be Indian nationals.

An intelligence officer who was posted at the Pakistani consulate in Dubai was also found involved in this money-making business. He has recently been ordered to report back to his department. He has allegedly sold Pakistani visas to Indian nationals.

A director-general level officer of the ministry of foreign affairs, who had served as the Head of Chancery at the Pakistani Consulate-General, is already facing an inquiry for making money from visa services.

The official had earned millions of dollars during his over four-year stay at the Pakistani Consulate in Dubai.

Another diplomat, who is posted in Tanzania, is also said to be facing similar charges. He is also accused of committing “unprecedented” irregularities while serving in the Dubai Consulate. The official reportedly owns two luxury apartments in Dubai.

A Consular Assistant at Pakistan’s Consulate in Jeddah and another official in Pakistan’s embassy in Riyadh, who were serving in the Visa Section, are also accused of financial irregularities.

A top diplomat posted in the Pakistan Embassy in Qatar is also accused of irregularities in the section. The official is said to be constantly creating hindrances in computerising the Visa Section of the embassy in violation of the ministry of foreign affairs’ directives.

A senior Pakistani diplomat who was serving as the consul-general in Pakistan’s consulate in Dubai was also found responsible for issuing visas to 230 American and Indian nationals in violation of rules and regulations. He had told his bosses in Islamabad that he was forced by a Dubai-based ‘highly connected’ Pakistani to do so.

The diplomat, who was recalled from the Dubai mission in August this year, made the statement during a preliminary inquiry by officials from the ministry of foreign affairs.

He is, however, currently posted as director-general in the ministry on an important assignment after being transferred back to Islamabad from Dubai.

Contrary to clear policy instructions, he had reportedly issued visas to 86 American and 150 Indian nationals during the months of March and April this year, sources told The Express Tribune.

Similar action that was to be taken against the visa officer who had issued travel passes on the instruction of the consul-general was stopped reportedly due to political pressure.

Pakistani missions abroad  have clear instructions not to issue visas to nationals not belonging to host countries

without explicit clearance from the ministries of interior and defence – a ban that was imposed by the ministry of interior through a “policy instructions” document on February 23, 2010.

The policy was framed following reports that those who were refused Pakistani visas in Washington and New Delhi had obtained them from Pakistan missions in the UAE, the sources said.

However, the policy is constantly being violated by Pakistani diplomats due to political pressure or for financial considerations.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 8th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (37)

  • Humanity
    Dec 8, 2010 - 9:42AM

    Islamic Republic of Pakistan ka matlab kya ???Recommend

  • SK
    Dec 8, 2010 - 10:05AM

    when head is rotten, body is bound to rot……Recommend

  • Hassan
    Dec 8, 2010 - 10:26AM

    I agree with ‘Humanity’, isnt there any patriotism left? this is getting totally out of hand.Recommend

  • A Suhail
    Dec 8, 2010 - 10:35AM

    Shameful behavior to say the least. None of these guys will ever face the music and will keep on minting money here in Pakistan if not there. Its about time Tribune start revealing the names of these people rather then referring to them by their employment designation. Recommend

  • Shahryar Ahmed
    Dec 8, 2010 - 10:38AM

    Well, all these people wanted democracy, We Got It Now!!!!

    That’s why they say, “Be careful of what you wish, it just might come true.”

    Why the CJP doesn’t take Soup Ajino moto Notice of this or Geo give News Alerts?

    Thank you, Geo & PML (N) sponsored Independent Media & the Lawyer’s Movement Leaders for this day.

    All Hail Democracy!!!!!!!Recommend

  • Maz
    Dec 8, 2010 - 10:39AM

    Ashamed to be pakistani,any one who offfers money we are ready to sell our country!!Recommend

  • Ajay Mittal
    Dec 8, 2010 - 11:20AM

    How can such people be blamed for doing what everybody does in Pakistan. Moreover they grew up seeing such activities around them every day of their lives. The “abnormal” has become a way of life or a “normal” affair. To be doing “abnormal” things would be considered ‘the height of stupidity” in Pakistan. Except Imran Khan, please name one person (except ofcourse the poor, hungry of Pakistan) who isn’t engaging in ‘normal’ activities. This culture has been passed down by the military and the civil leadership that make up the elite of the society.Recommend

  • Dec 8, 2010 - 11:35AM

    Ooooopppppppppsssssssssss realy it make us to cry with huge sound, the poors in Pakistan are dieing by inflation,loadshading, No water, High Price of Medicins Boob blast, Taxes and no facilaties by so called Govt. Oh! My Allah,
    we are soo unlucky Nation we are no hops from this Govt.
    Realy i feel very guilty we i pass near by Our Nation Hero Muhammad Ali Jinnah Tomb my heart weep i have no words to experess just waiting for new good dawn and cursing to this so called Govt. (Bohat Dheed Govt. hay)Recommend

  • G.Khan
    Dec 8, 2010 - 11:57AM

    Simple solution. Legislate and assign DEATH PENALTY for such acts. Very simple .Stop crying . Do it.Recommend

  • Dec 8, 2010 - 11:58AM

    why am i need at all surprised and felt “Deja Vued” by this news item Recommend

  • Iftikhar-ur-Rehman
    Dec 8, 2010 - 11:59AM

    Well everyone knows that the chiefs ( Zardari & PM) are making money and they will go sctt free, so why shouldn’t they make hay while the sun shines???? Recommend

  • Tippu
    Dec 8, 2010 - 12:38PM

    The author should take a deep breath. I take it he has not travelled much around the globe?

    All consulates of all countries issue visas at the discretion of the consul general. He/She has the authority to waive all other checks and requirements. India also does this when the situation demands. Im a witness to this. There is no harm in doing so if there is benefit to the host country. Recommend

  • Dec 8, 2010 - 12:53PM

    Wikileak said true this Govt. just give us tears, inflation and death………………Recommend

  • A Suhail
    Dec 8, 2010 - 1:17PM

    @Shahryar. Its not democracy fault that these individuals are corrupt. We all know how corrupt army is and martial law regimes were. You are obviously not paying attention to corruption at NLC, wah ordinance factory and royal palm club in lahore. All committed by army officers and under Mush. So stick your head out of sand and stop equating everything wrong with democracy. Recommend

  • Dec 8, 2010 - 1:34PM

    nice post …………….)Recommend

  • Amadeus
    Dec 8, 2010 - 1:38PM

    awesome!! atleast people demand visas ifor Pakistan =PRecommend

  • shak
    Dec 8, 2010 - 2:02PM

    shameless, pathetic, selfish, mean rouges who even sell their … in short everything for money. GOD please help Pakistan and Pakistanis.Recommend

  • khan
    Dec 8, 2010 - 2:55PM

    the paper has fulfilled its mission by naming and locating the problem.this is not a simple issue but a big blunder as the number of people who had been issued illegal visas is not small.this number may contain those people who are having ill desires for Pakistan.it should be asked from them that why were they refused visas in America and Indian consulates. but they don’t think on these lines.but they only think of making money by hook or by crook.and i don’t know how a person of such important designation can do such dirty job. the reporting person is a very sincere and dedicated Pakistani. at least he has thirst to unfold all those scandals which has direct and indirect effect on the sovereignty of Pakistan. other reporters and journalists should take him as initiative and follow suit.Recommend

  • Ali Rehman
    Dec 8, 2010 - 4:07PM

    And these diplomats are supposed ambassadors of our people! Im sorry. I refuse to let such corrupt, vile and shameless people represent us in diplomatic missions abroad. They should be recalled, discharged and prohibited from serving in the Foreign Service or a Civil Post in the future. Such abuse of a position is totally gratuitous.

    @SK. You are spot on! when head is rotten, body is bound to rot……Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Dec 8, 2010 - 5:18PM

    Mushraff buy one before its too late.Recommend

  • Mulla Toofhan
    Dec 8, 2010 - 5:55PM

    “It’s my Turn Now” is the general practice in Pakistan bureaucracy. Haven’t you heard the phrase.” Make Hay while the Sun shines”Recommend

  • A Pakistani
    Dec 8, 2010 - 6:04PM

    Looks like buy one get one free offer ! And the child can travel without any restriction.

    Keep having the greatest fun of all times. Time is running out.

    All of these will indeed come to haunt these ill-doers.

    Boomerang !Recommend

  • Cautious
    Dec 8, 2010 - 6:41PM

    And you wonder why Pakistani’s get scrutinized when they travel abroad?Recommend

  • Save Pakistan
    Dec 8, 2010 - 9:01PM

    @A Suhail. Actually corruption statistics beg to differ with your conclusion on military vs civilian regimes. While there may be some level of corruption in military regimes, there seems to be some level of progress in economic terms and the overall level of corruption goes down in Pakistan. This is not to say that military rule is better than democracy, however, for Pakistan’s this seems to be the case. The main reason is that our feudal/tribal politicians cannot rise above ‘zat’, ‘biradari’, tribe, caste, and religious sect to focus on national issues. Consequently, our politicians and their political appointees tend to gran what they can through means before their time is up. Moreover, you’ll also see that most those committing corruption during military regimes tend to be scions or affiliates of these very same politicians. We need to get rid of the parliamentary system and go for a Presidential system. That may give some new leadership a chance. The only grass-root democratic system that Pakistan has ever had, was the local body system, which was conveniently annulled by our civilian politician-dictators.Recommend

  • Asad ullah
    Dec 8, 2010 - 9:50PM

    Actually I am delighted. Someone is actually paying black money to come to Pakistan. Wow. Recommend

  • BS
    Dec 8, 2010 - 10:51PM

    “When power leads man towards arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the area of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses.” Recommend

  • Danish S.
    Dec 8, 2010 - 11:53PM

    Wow! Pakistan’s tourism industry is booming! oh wait, nevermind….Recommend

  • edgarm
    Dec 9, 2010 - 9:29AM

    Indians buying Pakistani Visas..I thought they would prefer US Visas !!!Recommend

  • Mir
    Dec 9, 2010 - 9:30AM

    So whats new?Recommend

  • vasan
    Dec 9, 2010 - 10:47AM

    Who are these Indians so desparate to visit Pakistan for “Terror tourism”?. I wouldnt be surprised if they have bought their Indian Passports from Indian consulates abroad.Recommend

  • A Pakistani
    Dec 9, 2010 - 11:44AM

    “All consulates of all countries issue visas at the discretion of the consul general.” writes Tippu. Thus far abosolutely right. But how do you justify issuance of visa against payment under the table as alleged in the news story. Sorry Tippu, you must revist your position.

    Lt Gen(R) Hameed Gul was quite meningful when he claimed in a TV programme that Pakistan Foreign Office was actually a “Pakistan Foreigner’s Office”. Now one can see what he meant.

    The foreigners can really stimulate us right, left, up, down in effect to the hilt and we start behaving like crazy idiots !

    Pakistan can never become master of its destiny with slaves like these nincompoops in the service of Pakistan.

    Despite the fact that the economy of Pakistan is a slave of the donors, these functionaries instead of improving the image of our country act in a manner that pushes us into the gutter as a nation.Recommend

  • G.Khan
    Dec 9, 2010 - 12:22PM

    Those passports would be sold to Blackwater , Other CIA assets, and other suspected people who otherwise can not enter the country legally. Recommend

  • Copper
    Dec 9, 2010 - 2:45PM

    Bureaucrats chant “hum kisi sai kum nahin”Recommend

  • J.Ustad
    Dec 9, 2010 - 6:06PM

    My question is: who would buy one except for would-be trainees in you-know-what?Recommend

  • Mawali
    Dec 10, 2010 - 3:23AM

    @Shahryar & Save Pakistan

    Thank you!Recommend

  • Raja
    Dec 14, 2010 - 9:51AM

    wah g wah , its the reality that the pakistan is a very important country , look people are paying a huge amount wow millions of dollars to enter the janat. yes well done.Recommend

  • Umair Waheed Sheikh, Khayban e Hafiz,IBA Karachi
    Jan 17, 2011 - 12:08AM

    it is no coincidence that these low officers are able to get away so easily. The intelligence and Pak Army are the most corrupt organizations in Pakistan. Lets try to remove everyone and start with a clean slate. Any takers? Recommend

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