The government authorities have placed the names of the former prime minister and Chairman of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) Imran Khan, his spouse Bushra Bibi and 80 party workers on the no-fly list.
The police department, National Accountability Bureau (NAB), and the anti-corruption department had requested the Ministry of Interior to include these names on the no-fly list.
Last year on the 25th of May commenced our descent into fascism. While three long marches by PDM during the 3.5 years of PTI govt were allowed without any hindrance, we faced the full force of state terror.
Houses broken in the middle of the night and PTI office bearers and…
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) May 25, 2023
PTI’s Asad Umar, Maleeka Bokhari, Qasim Suri, Asad Qaiser, Murad Saeed, Hammad Azhar, Yasmin Rashid, and Aslam Iqbal are among those whose names have been included in the Exit Control List (ECL).
The list of all the PTI members has been sent to all the exit points and airports in the country. The Interior Ministry has issued orders that none of these people will be allowed to leave Pakistan.
The move comes as top PTI leaders including Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Fawad Chaudhry, and Asad Umar were released after arrest as the government tightened the noose around PTI members in the wake of violent protests in which civil, and military installations were targeted.
Imran Khan secured bail in scores of cases as the populist leader continues to accuse the incumbent government’s gambit to arrest him. He is facing more than 100 cases, related to corruption, terrorism, and blasphemy charges. Imran Khan’s wife Bushra Bibi is facing corruption charges in Al Qadir Trust case.
Lahore police sent names of 700 PTI leaders to FIA
Meanwhile, the Lahore police have sent names of 700 PTI leaders to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) requesting them to impose a restriction on their foreign travel for one month. The FIA has been requested to place their names on the Provisional National Identification List (PNIL) — which temporarily bars people from travelling abroad.
The list sent to the FIA included the names of fashion designer Khadija Shah, PTI’s senior leader Shafqat Mahmood, Imran Khan’s nephew Hassaan Niazi, PTI’s supporter Sanam Javed Khan, and others.
The PTI leaders and activists have been on the authorities’ radar for their alleged involvement in the May 9 violence following the arrest of PTI Chairman Imran Khan.
The Ministry of Interior has three options to stop a person from travelling abroad. These included the ECL, Passport Control List (PCL), and the PNIL. Travel restrictions are imposed on those wanted by law enforcement agencies, criminals, and terrorists.
The PNIL is the initial stage where travel restrictions are imposed for 30 days. Those placed on ECL or PCL are permanently barred from travelling unless their cases are reviewed by the authorities concerned.
16 civilians handed over to the military for trial
Meanwhile, a Pakistani court in the eastern city of Lahore on Thursday handed 16 civilians over to the military for trial over their suspected involvement in violent protests following the arrest of former Prime Minister Imran Khan this month.
The military said after the violence that the suspects would be tried in military courts, used primarily to try enemies of the state.
The military has ruled the South Asian nation for almost half its history through three coups.