The spokesperson for The Illegal Foreigners Repatriation Plan and caretaker Interior Minister, Sarfraz Bugti, held a discussion with Afghan High Commissioner Ahmed Shakaib, deciding that children and women will be exempted from scanning by NADRA. Only male adults will be scanned for verification.
“The interior ministry issued directions that females and children below the age of 14 will not be scanned for entry by NADRA. Only male adults would be scanned during the voluntary repatriation,” reported Dawn. Only a “head count” of women and children will be done for record purposes.
The decision was made keeping in context the heavy influx of Afghan citizens on the borders as the deadline for leaving has passed and deportation has started. A huge number of people are also coming in for voluntary repatriation and it was feared that the situation could spiral out of control. This directive could smoothen the process a bit.
Authorities are asked to be gentle as any aggression will lead to consequences. A special helpline number has been set up by the ministry and every complaint will be catered to on an emergency basis. The Afghan Embassy has also been asked to send a representative who can work closely with the Interior Ministry.
وزیراعظم پاکستان @anwaar_kakar کی خصوصی ہدایت پر غیر قانونی طور پر پاکستان میں مقیم غیرملکیوں کے انخلاء کے حوالے سے وزارت داخلہ نے خصوصی ہیلپ لائن قائم کی ہے، جس کے نمبر 051111367226 اور 0519211685 ہیں۔ pic.twitter.com/NPjcuLFU1m— Senator Sarfraz Bugti (@PakSarfrazbugti) November 1, 2023
So far, 165,000 Afghan immigrants have left for Afghanistan during voluntary repatriation. On Thursday, a total of 19,344 undocumented immigrants left via Torkham.
Officials at the border crossing in Angoor Adda in KP’s South Waziristan district said that 294 Afghan immigrants, including 129 children, voluntarily left for Afghanistan on Thursday.
Out of 572 refugees taken into custody, 200 were sent back as they produced valid documents while 384 were sent to Chaman for deportation. 1,176 Afghans volunteered to reach Chaman on their own.
The crackdown in Punjab will start today as per the officials.