Govt orders to block mobile SIMs issued on invalid CNICs

Decision comes as FBR finalises a plan to block 0.5 million SIMs of non-filers and under-filers

Web Desk
A representational image of several sim cards. — AFP/File
A representational image of several sim cards. — AFP/File

  • Naqvi directs for setting up Nadra offices across country.
  • Minister orders waiving off fee on death certificates.
  • FBR finalises plan to block 500,000 SIMs.

Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi has directed the National Database Registration Authority (Nadra) to block mobile phone SIMs (subscribers identity modules] issued on invalid and expired identity cards.

During his visit to the Nadra headquarters in Islamabad on Thursday, the security czar visited all sectors and instructed authorities to set up Nadra offices across the country on the pattern of model police stations established in Punjab.

He said that establishing a model Nadra office will improve service delivery and provide convenience to the public.

Nadra Chairman Lt General Muhammad Munir Afsar welcomed the  interior minister on his arrival at the Nadra Headquarters.

During the meeting, the federal minister ordered to waive off the fee on the death certificates for the convenience of the public. The minister directed to ensure complete security of citizens’ data. He said that model offices of Nadra should be built to provide fast service to the public.

He said that more facilities should be provided on mobile platforms for the convenience of the people and social media should be used effectively to promote the institution’s initiatives.

Earlier this month, The News reported that  the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) had finalised a plan to block 500,000 SIMs of of non-filers and under-filers after Eid ul Fitr as part of a stern action against tax-dodgers.

The SIMs will be blocked within the ongoing month, it has learnt.

Top official sources confirmed to The News on April 9 that the FBR would issue Income Tax General Order (IGTO) after Eid ul Fitr as preparations were made in consultation with the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) for identifying 400,000 under-filers, who did not bother to file their returns despite possessing taxable income. 

The FBR possessed information about their transactions and notices were dispatched to them, but they never filed their returns. There will be 100,000 non-filers, who have been identified by Broadening to Tax Base (BTB) of the FBR and their SIMs would also be blocked.

“Yes, we have finalised details of this stringent action against alleged tax evaders and their SIMs of mobile-phones would be blocked by April 2024,” one top official said.