Pakistan court asks govt to remove ex-ISI chief’s name from no-fly list
Islamabad: A high court in Pakistan on Thursday asked the government to remove the name of former spy master Lt Gen (retd) Asad Durrani from the no-fly list.
Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Athar Minallah gave the directive while hearing a petition by 80-year-old Durrani seeking removal of his name from the Exit Control List (ECL), which names those barred from going abroad.
The court examined all records and found that there was no inquiry going on against Durrani, the Chief Justice said, adding that “Like all citizens, this retired three-star general also has rights”.
Durrani, who headed the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency from August 1990 till March 1993, ran into hot waters in 2018 by co-authoring a book titled ”The Spy Chronicles: RAW, ISI and the Illusion of Peace” with former Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) chief A S Dulat.
He was summoned by a high-powered committee of senior Army officers after which the Military Intelligence asked the interior ministry to put him on the ECL in May 2018.
Durrani challenged the move in the IHC in 2019, saying the inquiry into the book had been concluded but his name was not removed from the ECL.
The Ministry of Defence last month opposed Durrani’s request seeking removal of his name from the no-fly list, saying he had been “interacting with hostile elements” including RAW since 2008.
It contended that the former ISI chief’s name was placed on the ECL for “his involvement in anti-state activities”.
It also said that he would likely be involved in future publications against the interests of Pakistan.
Earlier, Durrani had acknowledged that military’s interference in the country’s political affairs was a reality, asserting that it was detrimental to Pakistan.
Durrani who also served as director general of the Military Intelligence in 1988, had said that Prime Minister Imran Khan’s biggest problem was the impression that he did not come to power by himself and that “he came with a khaki burden”.