Bound at home: Over 150 people from twin cities make exit control list

Several deceased also barred from leaving country

Obaid Abbasi June 20, 2015
Several deceased also barred from leaving country. PHOTO: APP


Around 166 Islamabad residents were put on exit control list (ECL) by the interior ministry between 2002 and 2014, many of which violate ECL Rules, said an Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Administration official.

The official said that 166 people were placed on ECL by the ministry from 2002 to March 2014. Incidentally, many people on the list are no longer capable of exiting the country, having died years ago.

The official said that the interior ministry recently shared the list with the ICT Administration and asked them to verify the status of the people on it. According to the list, available with The Express Tribune, most of the 166 people are from Islamabad or Rawalpindi, but a few are also from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Punajb.

According to the official, the ministry shared the list in order to comply with the revised ECL Rules 2010. According to the rules, people can be placed on the ECL if they are involved in corruption or misuse of power. Similarly, the ministry put persons involved in other financial crimes such as embezzlement or institutional fraud, and hardened criminals involved in terrorism, conspiracy and heinous crimes on the list. Tax defaulters and directors of firms with net liabilities above Rs10 million can also be added to the list.

The official said that most of the people put on the ECL don’t belong there, as their crimes are essentially family disputes.

The official added that the ministry had decided to review ECL rules, 2010 introduced by the Pakistan Peoples Party government. According to him, the ministry had shared a list of around 8,000 people in the country who were on the list. The official said that the ministry had already sought input from provincial home departments, the finance ministry, the State Bank of Pakistan, law ministry, and law enforcement agencies to revamp these laws.

A senior official of the ministry said that the nationwide list includes many recognisable names, including former president and military chief General (retd) Pervez Musharraf, former prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, former envoy to the US Hussain Haqqani, Bhoja Air owner Farooq Bhoja, former religious affairs minister Hamid Saeed Kazmi, former commerce minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim, former PM Yousaf Raza Gilani’s son Ali Musa Gilani, and former federal secretary Ahmed Lehri.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 21st, 2015.


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