Author: Mohammed Azhar Expats have a habit of being over-cautious, one such instance is that to avoid losing their Residency Permit cards they keep the originals at their accommodation and carry a photocopy of the same with them instead. However, the Ministry of Interior has advised expats in Qatar to always carry their original Residency Permit (QID) cards with them.
Expats have been urged to carry their original cards and produce it if and when demanded by the Al Fazza Police as photocopies of the same are not acceptable.
Residents, particularly expats, have been urged to be cautious and ask a person who claims to be a policeman or member of CID to produce his identity card and genuine officials of the law enforcement are provided with three types of IDs one from the Ministry of Interior, a CID ID, and the third one from the Drugs Prevention and Enforcement Department.
People travelling to Qatar have also been advised to verify the contents of any package that is given by any person to deliver to another person, if the verification of contents is not possible then people must not accept such baggage as it may land them in trouble for having contents that are prohibited in Qatar.
Similarly, circulating pictures of accidents or those involved in accidents on social media is not allowed in Qatar. Penalties for doing so include fine of up to QR10000 and two years of imprisonment as well. It is worth mentioning here that there are many provisions in the law that are intended to protect the privacy of the residents in Qatar such as Article 333, which states, “whoever illegally intrudes into another person’s private life and without consent” through different means, including “taking or transmitting somebody’s photographs or pictures of other persons in a private place using any type of device, shall be punished by imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year in prison and/or a fine not exceeding QR5,000.”
Furthermore, Article 331 of the penal code specifies, “whoever spreads news, photographs or comments related to a person’s private life, or that of his family, even if true, can be punished with a maximum jail term of one year and a fine of up to QR5,000, or either.”
Drug trafficking is one of the most serious problems Qatar is facing these days. Drug peddlers and smugglers are apprehended on a frequent basis and sent to prison for years and heavy fines are also imposed on the drug peddlers. To plug this loophole and not allow ill-intentioned people to bring large quantities of prescription drugs into the country, authorities have taken some measures to regulate the flow of these drugs into the country. One of the most important policy changes in this regard is that visitors entering Qatar can no longer carry prescription drugs without a valid prescription from a certified practitioner. A list of the drugs that are not allowed into the country can be checked here, so that travellers do not end up carrying medicines which are banned in Qatar.