LONDON: The Home Office has refused to provide the information about Altaf Hussain, MQM leader living in exile in London and now is a British citizen.
Responding in writing to a letter to Lord Nazir Ahmed, the HO said that in order to safeguard an individual’s personal information and comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 the Home Office is limited in what information it can provide when the request is made by someone who is not the applicant.
The Home Office is therefore unable to provide you with information about Mr. Altaf Hussain. The HO spokesman said; “I can, however, confirm that the Government has a range of powers to deprive persons of their British citizenship including where the Secretary of State deems it conducive to the public good.
The grounds for doing so include national security (including espionage), war crimes, serious and organised crime, and unacceptable behaviours such as glorification of terrorism”. “This applies equally to British born and naturalised citizens, but can only be exercised if it does not leave the individual stateless, even if only temporarily whilst they acquire their former or another nationality”, he added.
The HO response also made it clear that the Government is also committed to deterring British citizens from involving themselves in terrorism abroad, and recently introduced Temporary Exclusion Orders (TEOs), under the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015. TEOs are designed to disrupt and control the return to the UK of British citizens suspected of involvement in terrorism-related activity abroad.
This power enables the Secretary of State to impose an order on an individual which makes it an offence for the individual to return to the UK without first engaging with the authorities. A British citizen subject to a TEO would have the right to return to the UK, but must do so on our terms. This power will be used when it is considered to be necessary and proportionate to manage the threat posed by an individual returning from overseas.