LAHORE: Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials on Saturday stopped Balochistan chief of the Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP), Nawabzada Shahzain Bugti and his family from boarding a flight to Singapore at Allama Iqbal International Airport in Lahore.
Shahzain, who is the grandson of late Nawab Akbar Bugti, was on his way to Singapore via Tashkent Airlines with his mother, wife and children. He said that he was taking his mother to Singapore for an operation, which was to be carried out in four days.
The flight was expected to take off at 2:30pm, but was delayed as a result of the incident.
Sources have said that Shahzain had been stopped because his name was on the Exit Control List (ECL).
Shahzain said Interior Minister Rehman Malik had informed him in 2009 that his name had been removed from the ECL and his accounts had been opened.
He said on previous occasions he had been informed of his name being on the ECL through the media and in writing, but he was not aware of it this time. The JWP leader said he travelled to Thailand in March 2010 without any difficulties.
Sources also added that an argument took place between Shahzain and the officials, during which he tried to contact a number of people but failed to get any assurances. Officials only had instructions to stop him from leaving.
He said FIA officials told him that the family’s passports will not be returned and he will be informed in writing. The passports were returned with cancellation stamps on all them, said Shahzain.
The passports of the family were later returned and they left the airport.