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ISLAMABAD: The National Security Committee (NSC) on Wednesday approved the formation of a high-powered committee, headed by Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan, to investigate the matter of the audio leaks.

The NCS meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and attended by federal ministers, services chiefs, heads of intelligence institutions, and other senior officials, after due consultations also decided to prepare a “legal framework” related to cyber security and in this context directed the Ministry of Law and Justice to prepare the said framework.

According to a statement of the PM House, the meeting deliberated upon the matter of the audio leaks, and heads of the intelligence agencies gave a detailed briefing on the security of the Prime Minister’s House and other important government installations, cyberspace, and other related aspects.

It added that the meeting was told that an investigation is being carried out into the issue of circulating audios on social media. “Certain aspects related to the security of the Prime Minister’s House [PMH] and the foolproof measures to address these issues were also pointed out,” it added.

The meeting was informed that emergency measures are being taken to ensure the security of the Prime Minister’s House and other important installations, buildings, and ministries in order to avoid happening of any such situation in the future.

“The meeting approved the formation of a high-powered committee to investigate the issue of audio leaks. Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan will be the head of the committee,” says the statement.

Keeping in view the current changing environment of modern technology and cyberspace, the meeting agreed to review the security and safety system, as well as, ensuring the security of government communications, so that to avert any breach of the security system in future.

The development comes following a number of audios went viral recently that also included conversation between Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif with his principal secretary Dr Tauqir Shah at the PM House, which raised alarm about the safety and security of the important government installations and the official communications.

Leaked audio clips purportedly reveal PM Shehbaz's conversations with aides, officials

Taking notice, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had termed this a “serious lapse” and announced that a high-power committee will investigate the matter.

According to the PM House’s statement, the NSC also reviewed the situation caused by the devastating floods in the country, the ongoing rescue and relief efforts, and the current security situation.

The meeting condoled on the deaths due to floods across the country since June 14, 2022, and also expressed sympathy with the bereaved families.

The meeting reviewed in detail the steps taken to provide immediate relief, evacuation operation, besides providing food, medical treatment and essential items to more than 33 million flood victims.

It added that the meeting paid tribute to the role of the administration, the Army, Navy, and Pakistan Air Force in saving the lives of the flood victims, moving the victims to safe areas and providing food and other items to the people surrounded by the flood and other essential items to the affected people in the most difficult situation.

The meeting also highly appreciated the spirit and sacrifice of the civil society, media and philanthropists and expressed the expectation that they will continue to play their role in this cause with the same spirit.

The meeting paid tribute to the officers and men who embraced martyrdom in the incident of army aviation helicopter crash in Lasbela, Balochistan while helping the flood victims and stated that “the nation salutes its martyrs and their families”. Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood briefed the meeting regarding the prime minister’s recent participation in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Council of Heads of State in Uzbekistan and the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. He also informed the committee about the upcoming meetings of the prime minister with the heads of various countries.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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