IHC orders removal of Asad Durrani’s name from ECL
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday ordered the government to remove the name of former Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) director general (DG) Mohammad Asad Durrani from the Exit Control List (ECL), reported 24NewsHD TV channel.
During the hearing of a petition seeking court orders for the removal of Durrani’s name from the ECL, IHC Chief Justice (CJ) Justice Athar Minallah remarked that the government did not have the liberty to put the name of whosoever it wanted on the ECL. “The former DG ISI has the same rights as other citizens have under the constitution,” Justice Minallah remarked.
During the hearing, the IHC CJ asked the Additional Attorney General Syed Tayyab Shah that he had opposed the removal of Lieutenant General (R) Mohammad Asad Durrani’s name from the ECL on the grounds that he was currently facing an inquiry. “The truth of the matter is that no inquiry is underway against him at the moment,” Justice Minallah said and added, “The petitioner was a three-star general and he had also remained the DG ISI. And now he is a free citizen and is free to move of his free will.”
The IHC CJ said it would be better to summon the Ministry of Defence’s official, rather than the additional attorney general, to explain the government’s position in the case.
The former head of the country’s premier intelligence agency had moved the Islamabad High Court for the removal of his name from the no-fly list since he wanted to go abroad.
But the defence ministry opposed the petition on the ground that Asad Durrani’s name had been placed on the no-fly list for “his involvement in anti-state activities”.
The ministry also alleged that the former general, who remained in the army for 32 years and served on many sensitive posts, had been interacting with “hostile elements, especially Indian intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) since 2008.”