Posted on November 29th, 2023


From the US to UK, Canada, Australia, Japan, China and Saudia, no country allows any immigrant to stay there without official documentation. Recently when Pakistan announced a strict action plan against all illegal immigrants, a very strange and illogical wave of resentment simply ‘haunted’ the attention of some specific  human rights organizations all over the world. It seems that Pakistan has done something illegal and unethical by planning against the illegal immigrants in the country. It is something very strange that none of these human rights organizations liked to raise a voice against the recent shocking increase in the number of attacks on Pakistan’s security forces, military installations and lives and properties of innocent citizens. Particularly in the month of October and November 2023, a very mysterious type of increase has been noticed in terrorist activities in Pakistan which shows that ‘forcefully imposed’ war on terror has yet not come to an end in Pakistan.

This recent increase in terrorist activities in Pakistan seems result of some specific security measures taken by the government of Pakistan; say experts on regional security affairs, the decision of sending back all illegal immigrants to their respective countries is also one of those measures. A large number of such illegal immigrants includes immigrants from Afghanistan. Specifically speaking of the Afghan refugees, more than three decades back, Pakistan provided a shelter to millions from the war-stricken Afghanistan simply on humanitarian grounds. Providing shelter to the refugees from some war-stricken area is neither an illegal nor an uncommon act; all over the world it happens so many time but the case with the Afghan refugees is somewhat different. Under the garb of the Afghan refugees countless illegal immigrants from other countries also succeeded in seeking shelter in Pakistan. These illegal immigrants included a large number of criminals and terrorists too.

The illegal immigrants are creating a lot of law and order problems for Pakistan. Moreover they are adding a lot to already overburdened financial structure of Pakistan. At present there are more than 4 million Afghan migrants and refugees in Pakistan; says an official report issued by the Pakistani authorities. About 1.7 million of them are staying here undocumented. A huge addition to the total number of Afghan immigrants already living in Pakistan was noticed in 2021 when the Taliban took over the country; this number mounts to more than 600,000. Certainly such a large number is proving a huge burden on Pakistan’s already shattering economy. When the warlike situation ended there in Afghanistan a few years back and the Taliban took over control of the country, it was being expected that most of the refugees would love going back to their homeland because there were no more any foreign forces ruling over their country but situation proved altogether otherwise; none of the Afghan refugees desired to go back home, though now things are far better there under the Taliban control. It is because of that peace and prosperity in Afghanistan that today the Afghanistan Cricket Team has become a challenge to many of the recognized and well-placed cricket teams of the world.

To save the country from financial burden and to secure the law and order situation in the country, the government of Pakistan chalked out a plan of sending back all Afghan citizens back to their country but initially only the illegal immigrants were focused. In the first week of October 2023, in a meeting of the apex committee on the National Action Plan, it was decided that no illegal Afghan immigrant would be allowed to stay anymore in Pakistan after 30th October 2023. After that date they would be forcibly deported to Afghanistan by the law enforcement agencies of Pakistan. It was a very high-profiled meeting and was attended by the army chief, federal ministers, provincial chief ministers and heads of all civil and military security agencies. It was also decided in the meeting that initially the main focus would be on repatriation of at least 1.7 million illegal Afghan nationals to their homeland. Moreover it was also clarified that the decided screening plan is not only for the Afghan immigrants; it is for all those living in Pakistan without proper documentation. The decisions were officially conveyed to the media by the caretaker Interior Minister Sarfraz Bugti, in a press-conference. In the beginning the announcement made by the government spokesman was not taken seriously by the illegal immigrants but when on 1st November, the government of Pakistan started taking strict action against them, the situation began to change in flickering of an eye.

Some ‘worried for nothing’ type of pseudo human rights’ caretakers are expressing their resentment on Pakistan’s strict implementation on expulsion plan of illegal immigrants. Such ‘philosophers’ are ignoring the fact that in spite of repeated warnings, only about 200000 refugees have yet voluntarily returned to their homeland Afghanistan. This number includes at least 5,085 Afghans who were having no legal documentation for their stay in Pakistan. Same is the behavior of most of the Afghan illegal immigrants as they are portraying Pakistan’s screening out plan for illegal immigrants as ‘callous and unjust’. The fact of the matter is that there is nothing illegal, immoral or anything against international ethics in Pakistan’s plan of screening out all illegal immigrants including the immigrants from Afghanistan. Approaching different media outlets and social media forums for defaming and slandering Pakistan in itself is something unethical and immoral. Pakistan’s decision of sending back the illegal immigrants is in no way violation of basic human rights. It is something very strange that these self-claimed human rights ‘protectors’ never raise their voices against the atrocities committed against innocent Kashmiris in Illegally Indian Occupied valley of Kashmir.

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