LAHORE – The British High Commission in response to FIA request regarding information about passport number BD1876301 to further its probe into the ‘Olympic Visa Scam’ informed the federal police that the Commission has no record of a visa application being made in association with the mentioned passport number.
Deputy Director FIA, Sajid Akram, Lahore probing the matter had written a letter to the British High Commission asking any information about the above-mentioned passport number on July 25th. In response the British High Commission told the FIA, “We have no record of a visa application being made in association with passport number BD1876301”.
However, the Commission added, “we have a record of a working holidaymaker visa being issued to Muhammad Ali Asad s/o Muhammad Anwar Siddiqui. It was issued to passport number J609802 on 25/04/02 valid until 25/04/04, it added.
Meanwhile, the FIA summoned more characters involved in the scam and recorded their statements, an investigator seeking anonymity said, but added there was no substance in the case and the arrested people might be released soon, after receiving report from their respective departments.
Meanwhile, the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) in a report presented to the Interior Ministry has claimed that its operational system is fully in place and out of reach of any malicious activity.
An investigation officer was of the view that they arrested the employees of Nadra and Directorate General of Immigration and Passports on the basis of reports of their respective heads. “If the departmental chiefs were satisfied with their performance, how can we take action against them?” he opined.
It is worth mentioning that on Friday, the manager of Dreamland Travel Services, Assistant Director Passport Office Garden Town Mubashir Tirmazi and Assistant Director Population Welfare Imran joined investigation and got their statements recorded, during which Imran also verified the Nadra/passport form of Muhammad Ali Asad.
Meanwhile, the Nadra also submitted a report to Ministry of Interior on the issue, wherein it claimed that its system was fool proof and nobody could intrude into their system.
The report further says Ali Asad was now settled in UK for the last eight to ten years and acquired the UK nationality. As a British national, he obtained the UK Passport (506486804) with his own particulars, including the name and photograph bearing fake date and place of birth.
Being a dual national, he retained his Pakistani nationality and kept his original CNIC in his custody. Ali Asad was picked by ‘The Sun’ as undercover, who travelled to Pakistan on July 8. He stayed at Avari Hotel, Lahore, and booked a room from 8th to 31st of July, at the rate of Rs 18,000 per day.
The report added that the accused went to the Nadra’s Baghbanpura office to get his photo updated against his own CNIC on July 10 rather than getting someone else’s identity as claimed by ‘The Sun’. His CNIC was updated after matching with his previous record held in database.
After getting his CNIC modified, he processed for his Machine Readable Passport (MRP) on July 13, which was delivered to him on July 18.
‘The Sun’ also described another misleading fact that no next of kin information was stored in the Nadra database against the individual. In fact, the organisation had complete registration track of this individual along with family information and appropriate addresses. His mother is registered in manual identity card registers and in the 1998 Census database.
“Operational systems at Nadra are in place and are out of reach for any malicious activity. Each transaction is logged and complete audit trail is preserved. The Nadra management has a zero tolerance policy towards any kind of breach of security and is fully committed to safeguard the National Database.
Apparently, it is concluded that this activity has been designed with a malicious intent to malign Pakistan and build case for any recurrence with reference to the international event like Olympics,” the report says.