ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Interior ministry has decided not to deport US citizen Cynthia Ritchie who has leveled very serious allegations against the central leaders of Pakistan People’s Party and had gone to that extent that she claimed that the former Interior Minister Rehman Malik raped her, an allegation that can sentenced him for a long time but these leaders have strongly refuted her allegations.
Political observers comment that the Interior Ministry’s decision is astonishing and may be an act of revenge against former ruling party. Now, her filed case with the police would be pursued further bringing bad name to these PPP leaders. The Ministry has taken this decision on PPP application seeking deporting US Blogger. Ministry has filed a copy of this decision in Islamabad High Court (IHC).
Interior ministry has said in its decision according to security agencies report Cynthia has not been found involved in illegal and anti- state activities. Interior ministry has given clean chit to US blogger Cynthia Ritchie. IHC has directed interior ministry to provide copy of the decision to the parties concerned.
Interior Ministry decision says foreigners visas were extended till August 31, therefore, Cynthia Ritchie can live in Pakistan till August 31 according to law. Cynthia has filed a separate application seeking extension in her visa too. Action will be taken on her application regarding further extension after August 31 as per law.
It may be mentioned that Cynthia Ritchie had done several tweets against PPP leadership including Benazir Bhutto. PPP had resorted to IHC for legal proceedings against her.
The Ministry of Interior informed the Islamabad High Court that US blogger Cynthia D. Ritchie is living in Pakistan on an ‘extended’ visa and she is working on film projects in collaboration with the military’s media affairs wing Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government.
The Ministry in its report submitted to the IHC on Friday stated that Ms Ritchie “informed in her application that she had been working with Walkabout Films in collaboration with ISPR and the KPK Government on various film projects in the country. She further stated that she was waiting for complete documents for the formal extension of her business visa for one year which may take a few more days therefore she requested for a temporary extension of 30 days in her visa.”
Earlier; the Interior Ministry informed the Islamabad High Court that Cynthia Ritchie is not involved in any anti-state or illegal activity and can stay in Pakistan till August 31 as per the law. The report by the ministry was submitted to IHC in a petition seeking the deportation of the American citizen.
The ministry told the court that Ritchie is not involved in anti-state and illegal activities and the visa for foreigners was extended by the government till August 31. The IHC was informed that the American has already filed an application seeking an extension in her visa and the decision regarding the matter will be taken after August 31.
The court also directed the ministry to share the report with the petitioner. Former Punjab governor and lawyer Latif Khosa, while commenting on the report, stated that the party was not satisfied with the document presented by the ministry.
Khosa alleged that the interior ministry had tried to mislead the court. The former Punjab governor also alleged that interior secretary was not taking action according to law. The secretary interior should be forced to take action according to law,” he said.
Khosa said the report had stated that Ritchies visa was valid and also that she was not involved in any anti-state activity. We will prove that the visa is incorrect and also that she is involved in anti-state activities, said Khosa, adding that the US blogger will have to be deported after being convicted.
Last week, IHC had asked the interior ministry to take a decision according to law, on a PPP petition seeking to deport US blogger Cynthia D Ritchie. The IHC also urged the ministry to decide upon Ritchies stay in Pakistan and the extension of her visa until July 15 and then inform the court. Ritchie accuses PPP leadership of ‘harassment’ and ‘manhandling’
Ritchie’s matter landed in the court after the blogger in a video broadcast live on Facebook several weeks ago, alleged that senior PPP leader Rehman Malik had raped her while two others had “manhandled” her at a separate occasion.
She had stated that the incidents occurred in 2011 when the PPP was in power, and when the individual she accused of rape had been a senior minister. Ritchie had further alleged that two other senior party leaders a federal minister and former Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gillani (who has publicly responded to the allegation) had “physically manhandled” her when the latter “was staying the President House”.