ISLAMABAD – Prime Minister Imran Khan Saturday mocked the ‘ruling elite’ for their craving to remain abroad – ignoring the country’s beauty.
In a series of tweets, Prime Minister Khan shared videos of the country’s beautiful scenes and wrote: “The majestic beauty and diversity of our land is unparalleled. Sadly this beauty is not appreciated by our ruling elite which is why Exit Control List (ECL) is such a calamity for them.”
He added: “The captivating grandeur of our land is why I would be happy just remaining confined here working for our people.”
In a previous tweet, PM Khan had asked: “Why are some of our lawmakers so scared of the ECL? Why are they so keen to go abroad? There is so much work to be done by politicians in and for Pak (Pakistan) – the land they claim to love but some cannot wait to take frequent trips abroad and lawmakers have iqamas (work permits) or residencies abroad.”
The video clips posted by the prime minister depict Baltoro Glacier, the world’s biggest mountain glacier located outside Polar Regions, 43 miles long and over three miles wide in the Karakoram Range of Gilgit Baltistan.
The biggest mass of glacier is clearly visible from the space. The region has the greatest concentration of the world’s highest peaks including K-2, inhibited by rare wildlife like Markhor and snow leopards.
In December, the federal cabinet had on the recommendations of a Joint Investigation Team put 172 people on the ECL to stop them from flying abroad amid investigation into a fake accounts case.
Names of Pakistan People’s Party chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari, his sister Faryal Talpur, Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, Farooq Naek and several other leaders and Sindh provincial ministers were also included in the ECL.
Former chief justice Pakistan Saqib Nisar had grilled the state prosecutor over the government’s decision to place names of Bilawal and Sindh CM on the no-fly list. He also ordered the federal cabinet to reconsider the decision.
On January 17, the federal cabinet lifted the travel ban on Pakistan People’s Party chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah but warned they could again be placed on the Exit Control List if required.
Prime Minister Imran Khan directed the interior ministry to remove Bilawal and Shah’s names from the ECL after law minister Farogh Naseem’s detailed briefing. The law minister told the PM and other cabinet members that the government was bound to implement the Supreme Court’s orders.
Earlier, the federal cabinet had retained the names of Bilawal and Murad Ali Shah on the ECL, saying a decision will be taken after the Supreme Court releases detailed order. The top court later issued the details of the verdict, directing the government to remove the PPP leaders’ names from the ECL.
The JIT report mentioned that earlier 29 fake accounts were identified by the Federal Investigation Agency which laundered Rs 42 billion. The team further discovered 11,500 bank accounts of 924 account holders, 59 Suspicious Transaction Reports and 24,500 Cash Transactions Reports. All of these details were scrutinized, besides the loan profile of 924 individuals.
The report said the fake accounts were opened through the Omni Group and had been engaged with direct transactions with the Zardari Group, Bahria Town, Sindh Government departments and certain contractors while the ultimate beneficiary of money-laundering was Zardari’s family.
Advisor to the Prime Minister on Accountability Shehzad Akbar said the PPP leaders names were not being withdrawn from the JIT report on the money-laundering case. “They are not exempted from the investigations. The Supreme Court has not issued any such directions. Bilawal or Murad Ali Shah’s name can be put again on the ECL if the National Accountability Bureau deems it necessary,” he said.
PM to visit Mianwali on 27th
Online adds: Prime Minister Imran Khan will address a public meeting in Mianwali on January 27.
Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar visited the city on Saturday to finalise the arrangements in connection with PM Imran’s January 27 visit to Mianwali. He met local officebearers of PTI and received a briefing from them on preparations for the public meeting. He also issued some directives to them.