Islamabad: Days after a leading UK-based tabloid unearthed a major visa scam in Pakistan, Interior Minister Rehman Malik claimed that The Sun’s story was part of a conspiracy against the South Asian country.
The investigation carried out by The Sun centred on the Lahore-based Dream Land travel agency prosecuted nine years ago for human trafficking.
The scam involved a ring of corrupt Pakistani officials and politicians which could give potential terrorists the chance to enter Britain with Pakistan’s Olympic team.
Speaking to media in Islamabad on Saturday, Malik, however, declared that a case will be registered against The Sun’s agent Ali Asad for ‘misdeclaring’ the facts.
The minister added that Asad, who had a Pakistani passport earlier and was a dual national too, “manipulated the true story to bring a bad name to Pakistan”, noted The Express Tribune.
He also said that he has given orders to the director general of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to register a case against Asad. Not just this, he will also seek Asad’s deportation from the UK.
“We will give our report to the cabinet as well. We will also lodge our complaint.”
Claiming that The Sun’s story was part of a conspiracy against Pakistan, Malik said: “He (Asad) got a passport, but did he travel on it? No! Did he misuse it anywhere? No!”
“Ali Asad has been involved in similar frauds in the past, and still is.”
In the meantime, Malik has ordered the FIA not to arrest Abid Chaudhry, a central character in the UK visa scam.
The interior minister said that he got to know that Chaudhry’s brother has passed away. “So, I said that it was not the right time for him to be arrested, but he should be given the option of getting his statement recorded. He is recording his statement with the FIA voluntarily right now.”