Aaj English TV

Saturday, July 20, 2024  
13 Muharram 1446  

Afghan school boy leaves for country as his migrant father is left behind

Says he misses his father and classmates
Family split: Sufyan left for Afghanistan without Baba - Aaj News

Sufyan, an Afghan refugee and a student of class four, left for his country without his father who had to remain in Pakistan to pay back the loans he secured during his stay.

“We came from Rawalpindi where I studied in a private school. My classmates were sad as I was leaving them there. I also miss them,” he told Aaj News as he prepared to embark on his journey to Afghanistan.

Pakistan has set November 1 for the start of the expulsions, which could leave more than 1.7 million Afghans vulnerable in the South Asian nation, of a total of more than 4 million migrants and refugees from its neighbour.

According to Sufyan, his father was not joining them in their journey back to their home country as he had taken a loan of Rs170,000 and decided to stay back in Pakistan to repay it.

“He will come home after a long time. I will miss my father,” he said.

About 600,000 Afghans have crossed into Pakistan since the Taliban took over in 2021, in addition to a large number present since the Soviet invasion of 1979.

This month, Pakistan said it would deport all foreigners without proper documents after Wednesday, and about 60,000 Afghans returned home in October, with more expected to do so.

Pakistan says Afghan nationals have been found to be involved in crimes and militancy, and are a drain on its resources.

Western embassies and the United Nations are urging Pakistan to incorporate into its plan to deport hundreds of thousands of undocumented migrants a way to identify and protect Afghans who face the risk of persecution at home, Reuters reported.

Meanwhile, Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar said that only undocumented refugees are being asked to leave the country.

The refugees living in Pakistan without any documentation will be sent back to their country, he said while speaking to the media after visiting the Mayo Hospital in Lahore.

Pakistan will start a crackdown on undocumented immigrants, including hundreds of thousands of Afghan nationals, from November 2, the caretaker government’s interior minister said on Tuesday.

“Only two days are left for a voluntary return,” Sarfraz Bugti said in a video-recorded statement, adding that the November 1 deadline set for the voluntary return will expire on Wednesday.

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Afghan refugees

Afghan nationals expulsion