ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Tuesday said billions of rupees were being spent on NADRA Mega Centres and Executive Passport Offices to facilitate general public and avoid long queues at existing facilities.
He was talking to media persons at a ceremony held here in connection with the launch of National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) Mega Centre in Lahore and Executive Passports Offices (EPO) in Sargodha and Faisalabad.
The Minister said the Mega Center in Lahore had 48 counters,equipped with modern facilities to facilitate applicants for Computerized National Identity Cards (CNICs).
The Mega Center, which would remain open for 24 hours, had seating capacity of 400 people and would process 3,500 applications daily, he said and added four special counters had beenset up to facilitate old citizens.
He said apart from other areas of city, the residents of Data Ganj Bakhsh Town, Ravi Town and Shalimar Town would benefit from this centre.
Upto 60 applications would be processed daily at the EPO Sargodha and up to 80 at Faisalabad office.
Answering a question, he said NADRA has spent its self-generated money on building of executive passport offices and NADRA offices.
The minister said numerous measures had been adopted to provide better services and added he had already inaugurated Mega Centres of NADRA in Islamabad and Karachi which were working round the clock so that people could visit them at their convenience.
Chaudhry Nisar said nine mega centers are under-construction in different cities of the country.
He said in 2013, only 88 passport offices were providingservices while present government during its tenure has established 84 more passport centers to cover almost every district of thecountry, including far flung districts.
He said a total of 557 NADRA centers were working in the country and the Ministry of Interior was going to introduce a new concept in collaboration with Post Office for renewal, modification and reprint of identity cards.
As a pilot project, 10 Post Offices would be used for renewal of identity cards in next two months and later the network would be expanded to 1500 post offices across the country.
In future, projectof e-passport would be started, he added. To a question, he said action was taken against many officials in NADRA, a number of them were suspended and dismissed from service for their involvement in unfair practices.
More than 30,000 passports and 200,000 CNICS were blocked as part of the security measures in the country, he added.
Nobody appealed against the suspension of their passports, he said.
The minister said tens of thousands of cases of fake CNICs were identified and added 3600 persons surrendered their identity cards after a campaign in media, the minister said.
He said about 175,000 CNICs were cancelled, however citizens could appeal against the cancellation.
He said in future, in case there was any doubt about identity of a citizen, he would be issued a notice and only after that a card would be suspended or blocked.
Nisar Ali Khan said action would be taken against people who would be in possession of multiple identity cards.