Airlines fined for violating immigration rules

Source:  Samaa Published in Current Affairs on Wednesday, March 02, 2016

ISLAMABAD: Ministry of Interior (MoI) on Tuesday announced that Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) had imposed Rs 7.5 million fine on different airlines for violating immigration rules during last month and Rs. 2.5 million was recovered.

As per directives of Minister for Interior Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, international airlines for the first time were bound not to bring any person without visa and without prior permission. Heavy fines were also imposed on the airlines  which had violated the policy, an Interior Ministry spokesman  said here on Tuesday.

The spokesman, in a statement, recalled that in the past citizens of different countries were not only allowed to enter Pakistan without visa but people were deported to Pakistan by other countries through national and international airlines without verifying their citizenship. No concrete action was taken against the violators in this regard, he added.

He said Pakistani visa regulations were also violated in the past by bringing criminals and citizens of other countries in the country in guise of Pakistanis. This negative act made the country a dumping ground for criminals, he added.

However, the spokesman said Chaudhary Nisar took serious  notice of the situation and directed the FIA to take action against the violators. As a result, dozens of persons travelling to Pakistan were sent back in next flights on account of incomplete and fake documents.

Giving an example, he said former cricketer Dean Jones, who was travelling without Pakistani visa, was also sent back while in another case Indian movie actress Sharmila Tagore was stopped at Wagha Border as her travel documents were incomplete. That showed that laws in Pakistan were equal for all.

The spokesman said the FIA was implementing rules and regulations prepared by Ministry of Interior regarding visa and verification of citizenship in letter and spirit and in that regard no laxity would be shown to any airline.

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