Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar on Friday warned a consistent crackdown on illegal trade and said an effective management plan was being implemented to control cross-border smuggling.
“We have zero tolerance for those involved in the ‘smuggling industry’ and the law will take its course,” he said at a press conference held at the PM House.
The commerce ministry has taken a lead along with border management authorities including customs in revising the policy to allow or restrict the trade items, he said. He dismissed the impression that checking on smuggling would deny a source of livelihood to the locals residing along the bordering areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan. The people of these provinces deserve a correct and healthy environment of trade, not smuggling, he said.
Asked about the involvement of Afghan refugees involved in cross-border smuggling, Kakar said an effective policy in this regard had been agreed upon. He categorised the Afghans living in Pakistan into three classes including those registered with the government, aliens with no justification to reside, and those with identity theft.
“We will push the [Afghan] aliens back to their country and no one without the visa regime will be allowed to live here,” he said. He regretted that the previous lenient approach in this regard resulted in various social evils. He also pointed out the risk of smuggling leading to the strengthening of terrorist outfits and non-state actors.