Top judge did not order removal of Bilawal Bhutto’s name from ECL, says FM Qureshi

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that the chief justice did not order removal of Bilawal Bhutto’s name from the Exit Control List, on Wednesday.

This he said while responding in the National Assembly to remarks by Pakistan Peoples Party MNA Shazia Marri, who pointed out that Chief Justice Saqib Nisar had ordered removing the party chairman’s name from the no-fly list on January 7, but even after two cabinet meetings since then, the judge’s instruction had not been followed.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi clarified that the chief justice had not ordered removal of Bilawal’s name from ECL but rather, he had suggested that the matter should be considered.

He said that it was decided in the cabinet meeting that the government would wait for a detailed judgment from the Supreme Court and adding that a committee formed by the government was reviewing the matter.

PPP leader Naveed Qamar, responding to Qureshi’s statement, said that the government did not wait for the apex court’s written verdict before adding Bilawal’s name to the ECL.

Regarding the military court, speaking to media outside the Parliament, Qureshi said the government would constitute a committee over the matter of military courts, and the opposition parties would be taken into confidence.

The foreign minister said there was a need to have the opposition on the same footing as the government over the matter, and a constitutional amendment was also required with two-thirds majority.

Hence, there cannot be a final opinion on the issue without consultation with the opposition, he added.