As repatriation of illegal immigrants continues from Pakistan, Caretaker Interior Minister Sarfraz Ahmad Bugti on Friday said that foreigners are barred from participating in political activities in light of upcoming general elections 2024, VOS reported.
Addressing a press conference, the caretaker minister warned that foreigners, including Afghans living legally in Pakistan, will face deportation if found involved in political activities.
Sarfraz Bugti said that it is the government’s policy that the Afghans living legally in Pakistan or have the refugee status cannot participate in political activities. “They have nothing to do with Pakistani politics,” he added.
The minister noted that ten such persons found involved in political activities have been identified and they are being deported. He stressed that it is only the prerogative of Pakistani people to do politics in the country.
Speaking of security in upcoming polls, Bugti said it will be government’s utmost effort to provide maximum security for the peaceful conduct of the general elections.
“We will provide the paramilitary force keeping in view the request of ECP [Election Commission of Pakistan],” he added.
Responding to a question, the Interior Minister said the repatriation plan is not country specific. He said illegal foreigners including Afghans are being deported, adding that everybody with valid passport and visa is welcomed to Pakistan.
To another question, the Interior Minister said identity theft is a big crime and those involved in it will be brought to justice. He said reforms have been initiated in NADRA to deal with such issues.
The announcement came as the caretaker government initiated a nationwide campaign to expel millions of illegal foreigners, mostly Afghan citizens, living in the country.
A day earlier, COAS General Syed Asim Munir backed the government’s decision to forcefully repatriate undocumented immigrants, terming the presence of ‘illegal foreign nationals’ in the country “a security and economic threat”.
“Illegal foreigners are seriously affecting Pakistan’s security and economy. The decision to repatriate them has been taken by the government in the interest of Pakistan,” said General Munir during his visit to the provincial capital.