Islamabad - Some 92 officials of National Crisis Management Cell (NCMC) have approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC) against their transfer to National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA).

The ministry of interior has transferred all these officials to NACTA through a notification by dissolving NCMC and merging it into the authority.

The ministry through this aforesaid notification has transferred all NCMC employees from federal and four provincial capitals to NACTA and before that in November last year the federal government had also transferred NCMC funds to NACTA.

The petitioners nominated Prime Minister of Pakistan, secretaries of establishment, finance and cabinet divisions, director general NCMC, former national coordinator NACTA Hamid Ali Khan and the incumbent head of NACTA Ihsan Ghani as respondents and prayed to the court to set aside the notification related to the posting of NCMC’s officials to NACTA and also the transfer of funds.

In their petition, the petitioners contended that they were forcefully transferred to NACTA and they were never given any option whether to join NACTA or to remain at the strength of establishment division’s surplus pool.

They adopted that NCMC was an attached department of the interior ministry and its officials were civil servants whereas NACTA is an autonomous body under Prime Minister’s office and its employees will not be civil servants.

They argued that NCMC is delivering operational functions of ministry of interior and working as nerve centre of law enforcement/intelligence agencies. Its functions includes maintenance of crime data, verification of NADRA documents, cross matching of finger points, facial recognition through NADRA, coordination with law enforcement agencies for VVIP/VIP security, dealing with the issues related to deportation and abduction of foreigners as well as handling cases of missing persons, issuance of threat alerts, maintenance of security during Muharram processions and blocking of illegal SIMs.

They continued that the NACTA’s former National Coordinator Hamid Ali Khan on July 9, 2015 through misrepresentation got approved a summary for the merger of NCMC with NACTA whereas the summary was not routed through proper channel. It should been moved through secretary Cabinet and establishment division.

The petitioner claimed that since the NCMC was working under the interior ministry; therefore Hamid Ali Khan could not initiate any summary related to the transfer of funds and officials of the NCMC.