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Spokesman rejects allegations, says staffer bound to have clearance from accounts department
- Monday, April 29, 2013 - From Print Edition


LONDON: A Pakistan High Commission staff member has approached the London Metropolitan Police complaining that he has been threatened and harassed by senior officials.


Mira Jan, who works in the Protocol Section of Pakistan High Commission here, has sought police help complaining that he has been asked to surrender his passport; he has not been paid salary for two months; he is not allowed to work in normal routine; abusive language has been used against him and that, very seriously, a senior official threatened that his life would be in danger if he uttered a word about his ordeal to anyone.


Mira Jan, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs employee who was posted to London in August 2012, fled Pakistan High Commission on Friday evening and made his way to the local police station and told the police he would leave the station only when his safety was guaranteed.


Mira Jan took a loan of £2,000 from a local bank and sent money to Pakistan for treatment of his father. It was an independent arrangement between Mira Jan and the bank and according to the terms of the agreement, £200 is deducted from his salary every month for the bank to pay off the loan.


When approached by The News, Mira Jan confirmed that he has gone to the police seeking help. “I have never been a loan defaulter and this amount is small anyway. I have been constantly abused and threatened. My bosses are not telling me why they want me to surrender my passport. I took loan in a legal way to get my father, a cancer patient, treated. Is it a crime? I deserve respect and understanding but I am not getting it. I have been told that I will be taught a lesson in London or Pakistan. I am a poor man. I need security and guarantees that I will not be harmed by any one powerful.”


A police spokesman confirmed that “an allegation has been made” and officers from the Diplomatic Police Group (DPG) will look into it. A spokesman at the Pakistan High Commission said that Mira Jan’s allegations accusing PHC of victimising him are “baseless and have been made with some ulterior motives”.


He explained that Mr Jan had approached the High Commission for his transfer to Kandahar, Afghanistan. In the light of his personal circumstances, as stated by him, his application for pre-mature transfer was forwarded to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Islamabad, said the spokesperson.


“Due to his insistence for transfer he was asked to urgently settle all his financial liabilities including a loan from a private bank before he could actualise his departure from Britain. The High Commission has been depositing Mira Jan’s monthly salary in his bank account without interruption, as is the official practice.


However, the HC when approached by the bank asked Mira Jan to settle his outstanding loan issue with the bank but he was reluctant. “While his application was being processed to send him back to Pakistan, he was again informed that he would have to have clearance from the PHC Accounts Department and the bank so that there are no financial liabilities pending against him. There is no truth whatsoever in his allegation of being victimised by the PHC or its officials,” added the spokesperson.