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UK journey ban: British govt’s transfer to ‘purple listing’ Pakistan challenged

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  • A British-Pakistani household stranded in Pakistan has filed a authorized declare in opposition to the UK govt’s resolution to put Pakistan on its purple listing.
  • Barrister Rashid Ahmed has launched the declare on behalf of British Pakistanis Mohammed Fiaz, 51, his spouse Sabeen Fiaz, and their two minor kids.
  • The authorized declare has been launched on the grounds that the choice to ban all journey from Pakistan was made with none authorized authority.

LONDON: The UK Authorities’s resolution to place Pakistan on its ‘purple listing’ of nations — a transfer that disrupted the journey plans of 1000’s of British Pakistani households — has been legally challenged.

The authorized declare, in search of judicial overview of the cruel resolution, has been launched on behalf of a stranded British-Pakistani household in Pakistan.  Secretary of State for Well being and Social Care Matthew Hancock MP has been requested to overview and reverse the purple listing categorisation or face a London Excessive Courtroom problem.

Barrister Rashid Ahmed has launched the declare on behalf of British Pakistanis Mohammed Fiaz, 51, his spouse Sabeen Fiaz, and their two minor kids Adawiyah Fiaz and Mujtaba Fiaz, who’re presently stranded in Pakistan and unable to return to their residence within the UK as a result of rise in fares, problem in securing bookings, and costly quarantine prices.

Within the authorized letter, a replica of which is on the market with Geo Information, Barrister Rashid Ahmed wrote that on February 2, 202,  Sabeen Fiaz travelled to Pakistan, alongside along with her two minor kids, to see her father who had suffered a stroke. At the moment, her husband and third baby Bilal Fiaz remained within the UK. In early March, their flights had been cancelled by the airline as a result of difficulties. Thereafter, Mohammad Fiaz travelled to Pakistan in late March to help his household’s return to the UK. 

Flights had been already “extremely expensive” and sparsely accessible, the letter mentioned, including that Mohammad Fiaz had tried to ebook an oblique flight from Pakistan to England by way of Afghanistan, Turkey, and France, however was unable to board the flight, as he had no visa for Afghanistan, regardless of solely needing to transit. 

He acquired no refund and his state of affairs has now been made even worse as a result of Pakistan being positioned onto the purple listing of nations as flights have change into much more costly and much more sparsely accessible.

There aren’t any direct flights accessible anymore, with solely oblique flights accessible with journey occasions of between 20 to 40 hours.

Barrister Rashid Ahmed has advised the Well being Secretary that the Fiaz household can’t afford to pay the fees related to the necessary lodge quarantine on arrival to England, which prices round £1,750 per particular person for ten days — and as such the household are caught in Pakistan for an unknown interval.

The authorized declare says that the UK Authorities has expressly mentioned on quite a few events that it’s being led by Scientific Information however no such information has been revealed to justify a ban on journey from Pakistan and no info have been offered on Pakistan.

The authorized letter reminds the Well being Secretary that the World Well being Organisation has reported on Pakistan’s relative success and famous that it has “fared well” in its struggle in opposition to COVID-19 with it having far fewer instances per 100,000 as in comparison with neighbouring and lots of western international locations.

The declare added: “Other countries around the world, such as New Zealand, have not added Pakistan to their red list, whereas they have placed a ban on all arrivals from countries such as India as of April 11, 2021. It has recently been reported that a new variant of COVID-19 (B.1.617) from India has been detected in the UK with over 70 reported cases so far. However, at the time of writing this letter, India is not on the red list.”

The legal claim has been launched on the grounds that the decision to ban all travel from Pakistan was made without any legal authority; the addition of Pakistan as a red-list country within Schedule B1 of the International Travel Regulations is unlawful, irrational and disproportionate; the mandatory requirement for all persons from Pakistan travelling to the UK to quarantine in a government-designated facility is a breach of Articles 5,8, and 14 ECHR and is discriminatory; and the imposition of charges for being on the wrong side of the regulations is in violation of the family’s rights under the Immigration Act 1971.

Barrister Rashid Ahmed said that the addition of Pakistan to the red list cannot, in any way, “be mentioned to realize any of the specified outcomes set out within the authorities coverage and can’t be mentioned to be mandatory.”

The authorized declare has demanded of the UK authorities to take away Pakistan from the purple listing and waive all costs for the necessary lodge quarantine for many who can’t afford it; launch any paperwork displaying the factors for a rustic to go onto the purple listing, and reveal the Scientific information/proof used to find out that Pakistan ought to be added to the purple listing.

The Well being Secretary has been advised that he might be taken to the courtroom in case of failure to conform.

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