Cabinet refers Khawaja Asif's work permit case to interior ministry for investigation

08:58 PM | 13 Jul, 2019
Cabinet refers Khawaja Asif's work permit case to interior ministry for investigation
ISLAMABAD - The federal cabinet referred the case of former defence/foreign minister Khawaja Asif to the interior ministry for holding foreign work permit (Iqama) during his stint as a minister.

Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said on Saturday that the investigation will reveal how a guarantor of national security became a national security risk himself.

The special assistant elaborated that the interior ministry will take into account the countries who have interests with the company which issued Iqama to Asif, terming the case a serious security breach.

Dr Firdous said Khawaja Asif had become a threat to Pakistan’s security as he kept on receiving salary from a foreign company while he had the portfolios of foreign, and water and power ministry.

Awan said competition was going on among the PML-N leaders to show their obedience to the Zil-e-Subhani (Shadow of God) of Jati Umra by holding workers conventions.

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The Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) leaders were infact trying to get appreciation from their "king", she said and added that the real forum to prove one's innocence was the court but the PML-N leadership was reluctant to approach the same for remedy.

Dr Firdous said the war of succession had also started at Jati Umra.

She said the incumbent government fully believed in freedom of expression as evident from the fact that journalists were writing whatever they wanted.

Similarly, there was no restriction for anchor persons to discuss any matter on air, she added, however, said the code of conduct being pursued by the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) had not been framed by the present government.

She said the government stood with the journalists, who were promoting the national interest.

Awan shared that the forthcoming visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to the United States was very important.

Responding to a question, she said the government was negotiating with the traders to resolve their problems.

However, traders having a political agenda would be dealt with accordingly. The government could not be blackmailed by anyone, she added.

She said out of 20,000 traders of Anar Kali Bazar (Lahore), only 600 pay taxes. The country should no more be run through borrowing, she added. The traders wing of some political parties were compelling the businessmen to observe strike.