General

Ahsan Iqbal Terms Early Election Demand Conspiracy

Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal on Friday said that those demanding early elections were hatching conspiracy against the democracy.
Talking to media after the inauguration of NADRA’s mobile registration vans, he said that the recent changes in policies regarding visas and international non-governmental organisations (INGOs) will benefit Pakistan.
“We are not only in agreement over security requirement, but are also following them,” Iqbal said while speaking in Islamabad about the recent changes to the on-arrival visa policy for the country.Last week, the Civil Aviation Authority had announced that groups of tourists from a number of “tourism-friendly” countries are now being allowed on-arrival visas.
According to a notification posted on the official Twitter account of the aviation authority, the visa-on-arrival option will be available to group tourists from 24 countries “if the tour is organised through designated tour operators in Pakistan”.
“On one hand we need to complete our security requirements and on the other facilitate legitimate traffic of tourists, investors and businessmen,” he said.He said that Pakistan has a lot to gain from people of developed countries arriving in Pakistan but that the developed countries have nothing to lose by their people not arriving to the country.
On a question on why he was changing all policies enacted by his predecessor Chaudhry Nisar, he said: “We are not changing our policies, only rationalising them.”
Nisar and Iqbal had recently been in an agreement in the national assembly over changes made to the government’s policy.Nisar had said he had revoked the visa-on-arrival policy because it had been massively misused in the past, especially during the Musharraf regime.
Amidst desk-thumping by some of the opposition members, he had issued the directives that visa on arrival should be a bilateral affair. He was of the view that if a Pakistani parliamentarian was required to visit the embassy of a country for a visa then MPs of that country should also be required to visit Pakistan’s embassy.
“It is easy to say that Japan, United States or Britain’s minister [wanting to come to Pakistan] will also have to come to our embassy if our ministers have to go to their embassy,” Iqbal said today.