KARACHI: The recent economic crisis has forced poor people from various countries to come to Pakistan in search of better opportunities.
People from around 80 countries are currently registered with the National Alien Registration Authority (NARA). Addressing a seminar on human trafficking, arranged by Basic Education for Awareness Reforms and Empowerment (BEFARe), NARA DG Gul Mohammad Rind said that a majority of immigrant workers in Sindh are from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Burma while others include nationals from Iraq, Nepal, China, Sri Lanka and India.
BEFARe in collaboration with Actionaid has implemented a European Commission project, “Promotion of Rights, Capacity Building Measures and initiatives to curb Illegal Migration including Human Smuggling and Trafficking” in all four provinces of Pakistan including Karachi in Sindh, Rahimyar Khan in Punjab, Quetta in Balochistan and Peshawar in NWFP.
Addressing the seminar, BEFARe Project Manager Hina Ambreen said, “We are in the process of forming 500 community organizations in different areas of Pakistan so that human trafficking could be controlled.” Meanwhile, BEFARe Community Development Officer Akhter Sheikh informed the people attending the seminar that NARA has recently registered 1,25,000 people of different nationalities. Addressing the seminar, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Assistant Director Riaz Gondal said, “FIA has established 11 Anti Trafficking Units throughout Pakistan to fight human trafficking while a website has been developed where people can access information related to registered job recruiters.”
Advocate General Sindh Yousaf Leghari said that laws such as PECHTO 2002 were formed with the objective to curb illegal migration, punish the traffickers while protecting the rights of human trafficking victims. Minister for Labour Ameer Nawab said that the Sindh government is developing a job data bank that will provide information about the international offers for our skilled workers to curb illegal migration.