ISLAMABAD - The federal government has decided to again verify national identity cards of all the people, a spokesman for the interior ministry said yesterday.

The decision came after a Pakistani CNIC and a green passport were found near the wreckage of US drone-hit car, in which Afghan Taliban chief Mullah Akhtar Mansour was believed to have been killed a couple of days ago.

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan gave 48-hour deadline to the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) to prepare a roadmap to launch a ‘National Plan for Re-verification of CNICs’.

However, senior Nadra officials believe that this would remain an ‘uphill task’ for the authority to again verify CNICs in such a large number.

According to a Nadra official, there are over 100 million CNICs issued to Pakistanis and it would remain a big task to verify these.

The directives by the minister came during a meeting at Nadra Headquarters a day after he admitted that the officials were involved in issuing CNICs and passports to foreigners, including Afghan nationals.

According to the official data of the Interior Ministry, the government has cancelled 6,062 illegal CNICs issued to aliens in 2013; 22,361 in 2014; 96,689 in 2015 and 1,11,540 in 2016, while around 29,000 passports in the possession of aliens have been cancelled since 2013.

A Pakistani CNIC and passport of Wali Muhammad and having address of Qilla Abdullah, Balochistan, was found from the drone-hit car wreckage site in Balochistan in which Taliban chief Mullah Mansour was believed to be killed.

It is being believed that the CNIC and passport were being used by the dead  Taliban chief. Though the matter is under investigations, questions are being raised on the credibility of Nadra.

"Nadra has 48 hours for submitting a work plan with a set deadline for initiation of National Plan for Re-verification of CNICs across Pakistan," remarked Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan during the meeting.

"After the CNIC found at the drone site, the message has gone to the world that Pakistan's CNIC can be used by anyone. This is against our strategic, security and national interest," the spokesman for the interior minister quoted the minister as saying.

"Let's not send a message to the world that Pakistani ID is easily available to anyone who is willing to pay for it. Being a responsible state, we will ensure that the usage of CNIC by any alien is completely eliminated after this exercise," added the minister.

"This measure would help us ensure that in future no alien will be able to use Pakistani CNIC and passport, besides removal of those aliens currently holding Pakistani CNIC."

The meeting also decided to speed up the process of blocking of Pakistani CNICs held by aliens. It was also decided that national security agencies would also assist Nadra in ensuring blocking of CNICs and its verification.

The interior minister directed the top hierarchy of Nadra to address the issue of blockage of CNICs of Pakistani nationals.

He also directed that "inefficient and under-performing director generals of the authority should be sacked." He tasked Nadra chairman to take immediate steps to cleanse Nadra.