Premier to visit Saudi Arabia on April 27
After reportedly having his name removed from the Exit Control List, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will embark on a trip to Saudi Arabia on April 27, sources privy to the matter said Sunday.
During the visit, the premier will perform Umrah (Islamic pilgrimage) on the sidelines of the visit. PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz and JUI-F Chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman will accompany the premier, sources said.
Meanwhile, the Interior Ministry on Sunday took off the Exit Control List as many as 100 names including Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif, Vice-President Maryam Nawaz and other prominent party leaders.
The ministry has issued notification in this regard. The names of these personalities had been enrolled on the ECL on the recommendation of the National Accountability Bureau and the Federal Investigation Agency.
While acting upon the new amended ECL rules, the Interior Ministry struck off the names of Shehbaz Sharif, Nawaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz, Khaqan Abbasi, his son Abdullah Khaqan, Miftah Ismail, Ahsan Iqbal, former OGRA chairperson Uzma Adil and others from the no-fly list.
Besides prominent political leaders, the names of bureaucrats and important business people have also been taken out. It is pertinent to mention here that Maryam’s name was included in the ECL after she got involved in Ch Sugar Mills case in 2019 and Shehbaz’s name was put on the list because of the FIA probe into money laundering case.
A couple of days ago, the government amended the rules controlling citizens from leaving the country in a bid to end practice of keeping people on no-fly list for decades.
In his maiden press conference, new Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah said a person’s name put on the ECL would automatically be removed after 120 days. However, the duration can be extended for another 90 days if there is concrete evidence.
The changes have been made to Rule 2 of Exit from Pakistan (Control) Rules, which define grounds to prohibit a person from going abroad.
A new rule (4-A) has been added under which a representation seeking review will be decided within 30 days.
As many as 4,863 people were on the ECL and the new rules would benefit around 3,000 people.