Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said on Monday that India, Israel and Afghanistan have been colluding to create unrest and unleash a wave of terrorism in Pakistan.

Addressing a press conference in Islamabad, the minister said India’s RAW [Research and Analysis Wing], NDS [National Directorate of Security] of Afghanistan and Israeli spy agency [Mossad] have been trying to sabotage peace in Pakistan.

Sheikh Rashid claimed that they have also been using global media and trying to involve local media to create disharmony among various sections of the society of Pakistan.

The interior minister said that “due to these reasons, I have postponed my August 13 rally and fireworks at Lal Haveli in Rawalpindi that had been held for the last four decades.”

He said that the nation should unite to face the troika of India, Israel and Afghanistan as they have been conspiring against Pakistan. “It is unfortunate that the opposition is not understanding how the situation would emerge in the region in next six months.”

Talking about former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, he said he should return to the country as he has two options left with him to stay in the United Kingdom on medical grounds – either to file an appeal against the decision of British Home Office that refused him further stay in the country or seek asylum to prolong his stay in the UK.

“But it is unlikely that he would seek asylum,” he added.

The minister said that the federal government had revoked his passport in February and now he should come back to the county. 

“The leader is a person who lives and dies in the country,” Sheikh Rashid said.

Referring to ex-premier Nawaz, he lamented that the people used to make tall claims when in power, but wanted to flee the country when they lose.

He said that no heaven would fall if a leader is jailed, and added that he himself was sentenced to seven-year imprisonment on frivolous charges of possessing a Kalashnikov.

Sheikh Rashid also referred to the opposition’s warning to the government that they would resist if Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif was arrested by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA).

“Nothing happened when Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was executed,” he said, and added that he [Nawaz] was not leader of the stature of Bhutto.

“There should be the rule of law in the country.”

He also warned JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman to refrain from threatening the government that they would create law and order situation if Shehbaz was arrested. The law would take its course if any one violated it, he added.

About the upcoming holy month of Muharram, the interior minister said that all provinces have been asked to seek deployment of civil armed forces, if needed, and he would visit four provinces on emergency basis.

The minister also requested the mourners and Ulema to follow the SOPs devised by the NCOC during Muharram.

He said that NADRA would start issuing vaccination certificates within a week to fulfil the requirement of Middle East countries.

Responding to a question about the Dasu blast, he said that he had detailed meetings with Chinese ambassador Nong Rong twice last week and was in contact with the Chinese public security minister. The law enforcement agencies have completed the investigation but Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi would make public its details, he added.

“Any hindrance in China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project would not be accepted at any cost.”

He said that the whole nation stood by CPEC as it stood by the independence struggle of people of Indian Occupied Kashmir. “Those who wanted to create chaos in Pakistan are doomed to fail,” the minister added.

On the investigation of alleged abduction of daughter of Afghan ambassador to Pakistan, he said that the Afghan investigation team returned home on August 8 and Islamabad police provided the footage and complete record through Foreign Office.

He said that they have also demanded that Afghan police should also give Pakistani agencies access to the daughter of Afghan ambassador (the complainant) as well as her phone for forensic analysis.

Sheikh Rashid said that the cabinet has allowed the Ministry of Interior to issue arms licenses but there were some rules and procedures to follow. Gone are the days when former governments had been issuing up to 100,000 arms licenses in a single tenure.

But now, certain conditions would have to be met before issuing of each license, he added.


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