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Cabinet to decide on inclusion of Sharifs’ names on ECL: minister

LAHORE: Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal on Saturday said the names sent to his ministry for inclusion on the Exit Control List (ECL) have been forwarded to the federal cabinet for approval.

Speaking to the media, he said the ministry has been deciding cases with regard to the placement of names on the no-fly list in line with the apex court’s judgment in this regard.

To a query about General Pervez Musharraf’s return, the minister asked if former premier Nawaz Sharif could appear before courts, why can’t he?

He assured that the former military ruler shouldn’t worry about his security as he would be provided complete protection upon his return. Hopefully, he added, Musharraf will come back and face courts.

On February 14, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) wrote a letter to the interior ministry seeking to place former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Captain (retd) Muhammad Safdar on the ECL.

On Friday, the matter about inclusion of their names on the ECL was raised on the floor of the National Assembly.

Responding to a question, former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said when he was the interior minister, specific criteria was laid down to place names on the ECL.

At present, he said, names were being placed on the no-fly list on the recommendations of courts, defence institutions and intelligence agencies as per the law.

Nisar went on saying that he had changed the policy of placing names on the ECL and minimized the role of ministry.

He further said the committee was free to take decisions on merit during his tenure, wondering about alleged double-standards of placing names on the no-fly list.

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