Pakistan to open tourism display center at consulate in Dubai

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Consul-General in Dubai Ahmed Amjad Ali has said that we will soon open a tourism display centre at the consulate to educate people about the tourism sector in Pakistan and to provide all possible information and assistance to those who want to visit Pakistan.

He said the consulate has improved its facilities to provide better community services. A temporary consular hall for the passport renewal was built last year with the capacity of 180 people while separate sitting areas were provided for people coming for identity card renewals and to apply for visas.

Providing assistance to destitute Pakistanis is a priority for the country’s consulate in Dubai, Ahmed Amjad Ali said. He said an overwhelming number of Pakistanis in Dubai and Northern Emirates approach the consulate for assistance, half of whom don’t meet the criteria set by the diplomatic mission, Khaleej Times reported.

“We provide assistance to destitute Pakistanis and work with Pakistani associations for the same. For providing assistance in non-emergency cases, we need to seek special approval,” he said. Such cases include those struggling from bank loans, who need help with monthly school fees and illegal stay penalties.

“As for air tickets, we provide them to destitute Pakistanis. In 2019, we spent Dh524,000 on air tickets, repatriation of bodies and stretcher cases. A total of 650 mortal remains were sent back to Pakistan with the consulate’s assistance,” he said .

A total of Dh1 million blood money was transferred to legal heirs of Pakistanis who died in Dubai. This includes money retrieved from companies, insurance firms and individuals.

The consulate was also able to help release 386 Pakistanis who were jailed for “small amount of fines”.

“We give financial support to prisoners who have completed their sentences but are stuck inside because of small payments,” he said .

He advised people to follow the procedures set by the UAE authorities and the Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis. “Job seekers can always check with the consulate about the jobs they are promised by any recruitment agent,” he added.

He said the most job frauds complaints were received against companies who recruit security guards. He also advised the Pakistani community members in the UAE to inform the consulate in case they come across any ‘visa fraud’ cases.

The Pakistani Consulate in Dubai is also working towards improving the conditions of schools under its supervision, said Consul-General Ahmed Amjad Ali.

Three schools under the consulate’s provision has been given Dh1 million worth of support in 2019, which includes financial assistance, smart boards, cameras for security reasons, kindergarten play area and school bus.

Sheikh Rashid Al Maktoum Pakistan School in Dubai has now transferred its licence under Dubai’s Community Development Authority (CDA), which means the school will be able to legally raise funds for its operations.

The consulate provided assistance to the school and was able to get licence penalty of Dh195,000 waived off, the school had been struggling with the penalty for years and was unable to transfer its licence under the CDA, he said.