Posts Tagged ‘corruption’

NAB launches $32 million money laundering scandal inquiry against Nawaz Sharif

Nawaz SharifISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Thursday said it has started investigations against the Sahrif brothers in a $32 million money laundering scandal.

“The reference against Sharif brothers was sent by Interior Minister Rehman Malik and it will be decided on merit,” NAB spokesman Zafar Iqbal said while addressing a media briefing at the NAB headquarters. Replying to a question about the reports that President Asif Ali Zardari has directed the NAB chairman to initiate an inquiry against the Sharifs and reopen pending cases against them, the spokesman said the president had only directed the NAB chairman to ensure that there was no political victimisation. Malik had earlier claimed he had evidence to prove that the PML-N leaders were involved in laundering $32 million.

Iqbal said NAB has so far recovered Rs 2.012 billion from Rental Power Plants (RPPs) on the directives of the Supreme Court (SC). Giving details, he said Rs 109 million were recovered from Pakistan Power House and Walter International, Rs 546 million from Techno Engineering, Rs 50 million from Young Generation, Rs 225 million from Gulf company and Rs 100 million from Reshma company. The bureau has recorded the statements of former power minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Shaukat Tareen and Liaquat Jatoi, but no money has been recovered from them, he said, adding the three will be summoned again if needed.

The NAB spokesman said the Interior Ministry has not yet put the names of ministers involved in RPPs’ case on the Exit Control List (ECL) despite a request by NAB. Responding to a question, he said that nobody has been given clean chit in the case, rather NAB is in the process of recovery from the RPPs. Moreover, the bureau has also sent its teams to inspect the sites of RPPs and teams are busy finalising their reports. Iqbal said NAB was in contact with an army team questioning generals named in NLC corruption reference.



Documents Point To Sharifs $32 Million Corruption Scandal

Following documents have been placed before the Supreme Court and National Accountability Bureau (NAB) alleging Nawaz Sharif involvement in $32 millions corruption scandal.

NAB may open more cases against Sharifs

ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) is preparing to take up cases against PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif.

According to sources, the cases relate to default of Rs4.9 billion loans obtained from nine banks in 1994-95.

“Cases against Sharif brothers were to be approved in a recent NAB board meeting but were deferred on the directives of the Chairman, Admiral (retd) Fasih Bokhari,” an official of the bureau said on Monday.

The chairman is reported to have said that all pending cases about politicians would be taken up soon.

The NAB spokesman was not available for comment.

The bureau had earlier frozen some assets of the Sharif family against which the loans had been taken.

The Supreme Court upheld in January a judgment of the Lahore High Court asking NAB to release the assets of the Sharif family. It dismissed an appeal by NAB Prosecutor General K.K. Agha against LHC’s Oct 4, 2011, directive to the bureau to return Rs115 million and property of Hudabiya Paper Mills lying with the National Bank, Islamabad.

The sources said the assets had not been released so far.

The prosecutor general had told the Supreme Court that before heading to Saudi Arabia in December 2002, Nawaz Sharif had consented to return money to NAB under an agreement.

When contacted, PML-N spokesman Mushahidullah said the party’s chief and his family were not defaulters of any bank loan. “That was the reason Nawaz Sharif demanded of the government to make public details of all bank loans not repaid by politicians,” he said.

Replying to a question, he said the value of the frozen assets was far higher than the amount of loans obtained. “Once their assets are released, they will pay the loans,” he said.

The loans were taken from the NBP, Habib Bank, United Bank, Muslim Commercial Bank, Punjab Mudaraba, Bank of Punjab, Agriculture Development Bank, Pakistan Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation and ICP Bank.

During the proceedings in the Supreme Court, the NAB prosecutor general submitted an agreement signed by Nawaz Sharif and the Musharraf government.

The LHC had declared the taking over of property of the petitioners as unconstitutional, ultra vires under NAO, 1999, and without lawful authority. It had also ordered payment of compensatory cost of Rs150,000 per petition to Hudabiya mills, Nawaz Sharif, Shahbaz Sharif and Mian Mohammad Abbas Sharif.

Students Protest Corruption of Sharifs

Students protest corruption of Sharifs

Recent agitation against the Punjab government on the intermediate result fiasco, underscores the growing wedge between the youth and a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) desperate to woe the younger generation. The protests could not have come at a worse time for the Sharif’s, who are trying to mobilise the public against the federal government. Following the cancellation of the intermediate exams at four Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) centres in Punjab, students and the youth have raised fingers at the credentials of the Punjab Chief Minister (CM) to mount an anti-corruption campaign against the federal government. The failure of the online examination system across Punjab has sparked anger that now risks the 28 October rally by the Sharif brothers against the federal government, Pakistan Today learnt on Sunday.

Students have asked on what grounds are the Sharif brothers taking out a rally against corruption when the education boards in their own province had become the hub of corruption. While the Punjab CM was visiting education institutes to garner support, the cancellation of Inter-1 result at four BISE boards, including Lahore, Gujranwala, Multan and Faisalabad, sparked rage amongst students who chanted slogans against Shahbaz and Nawaz Sharif and set Punjab government advertisements on fire. After his Inter result was cancelled, student Wasif Ali said,

“Everytime I find the Punjab CM criticising corruption by the federal government, I want to ask him: what happened at the four BISE boards, Mr CM?”
– Wasif Ali

“Is it because of his love for education that no permanent education minister has been appointed in Punjab,” he said, “the education ministry has failed due to its incompetence and the CM should not expect the youth to turn up at his rally.”

“The parents of female students are sitting on roads and chanting slogans against the Punjab government but his government has ordered police to beat up students protesting for their rights. Why should we join him in the rally?” Kashif asked. Another intermediate student, Adeel Ahmad said it was ironic the PML-N was holding a rally against corruption when the CM himself was supervising corruption in Punjab. “While Shahbaz has rightly suspended the BISE Chairman and Controller, no action has been initiated against the man behind the fiasco, BISE It Consultant Dr Majid Naeem, who is related to a PML-leader,” Adeel said.

He said it was common knowledge that Dr Majid had corruptions cases registered against Majid, who had been terminated from Punjab University on corruption charges. He said the fact that the PML-N was turning a blind eye to Majid’s corruption, showed their hypocrisy.

Punjab stuffing PML-N men in govt jobs illegally

Who wants a free job on government payroll?


ISLAMABAD: Despite a public rhetoric, the Punjab government, too, has informally allowed MPs belonging to the PML-N and the Unification Block of the PML-Q to get their choice candidates appointed to government jobs.

Though officially this is denied both at political and bureaucratic levels, information retrieved from a computer of one of provincial departments reflects how almost 110 favourites of lawmakers have been short-listed for appointments in just one office.

These appointments are sought in the low scale jobs in BS-1 to BS-5. As per the government rules, these posts are required to be filled through a transparent procedure, but in the case of Agriculture Department, everything has been finalised even before the final interviews of the candidates.

In the first week of February 2011, the Punjab Agriculture Research Department advertised almost 133 low scale (BS-1 to BS-5) posts for Ayub Agriculture Research Institute, Faisalabad. It is not clear how many thousands have applied for these jobs, but the computer managed by the institute’s deputy director administration and accounts Malik Hayat Azad has already finalised a list of almost 110 candidates, all recommended by the local PML-N MPs, against each advertised post.

The completion of appointment process though awaits the final interviews is being delayed because of the unavailability of concerned directions, sources in the department insist the list as reflected in the institute’s computer is final.

The institute’s director general, Dr Noorul Islam Khan, when contacted, categorically denied this and assured that all appointments would be made on merit. He said he was not aware of any computer list of final candidates, but explained the public representatives all over the world, even in the United States, do write recommendatory letters. He said parliamentarians in Pakistan do have to take care of their electorate, but it should be ensured that the deserving candidates are not denied their right.

His administration officer Malik Hayat Azad, when contacted, also denied that there exists any final list of the candidates for appointments in his computer.

However, some credible sources in the department provided The News both soft and hard copies of the list, which contain all the relevant details, including the names of the MPs on whose recommendations the favourites are being appointed. Since the jobs relate to Faisalabad, therefore, the share of these jobs is also distributed among the PML-N and pro-government PML-Q MPs from the same area.

The News is also in possession of some of the letters of recommendations sent by the ruling MPs of Punjab to the Ayub Agriculture Research Institute. In one such case, the PML-N MNA and chairman Standing Committee on Textile Industry, Haji Muhammad Akram Ansari, formally sent the list of seven of his favourites to the institute. Most of the recommended candidates are reflected in the final list.

According to details, MPs from Faisalabad division include Rana Sanullah, Sardar Dildar Cheema, Akram Ansari, Ajmal Asif, Abid Sher Ali, Raza Nasrullah Ghuman, Zafar Iqbal Nagra, Shafique Gujjar, Kh Muhammad Islam, Rai Muhammad Ijaz, Malik M Nawaz, Shahid Khalil Noor, Rao Kashif Raheem and Dr Khalid Imtiaz Khan Baloch.

The names of the recommended candidates include Rustam Ali, Gohar Ali, Arif Hussain, Muhammad Afzal, Muhammad Asif, Akbar Ali, Makhdoom Sabir, Awais Ashraf, Muhammad Ilyas, Intisarul Hassan, Mehran Maqsood, Muhammad Asif Nadeem, Ashiq Ali, Khalida Bibi, Shamoon Masih, Khalid Iqbal, Munawar Hussain Muhammad Tayyab, Mahmood Tahir Khan, Muhammad Usman Akbar, Sanaullah, Asif s/o Ghulam Jillani, Gulam Mustafa, Sajad Hussain, Faisalur Rehman, Muhammad Awais, Asghar Ali Shah, Habib Ahmad, Mubashar Iqbal, Muhammad Jabar, Pawal Francis, Hamad Ali, Khyzar Hayat, Amjad Hussain, M Tahir Saleem, Javed Iqbal, Sakhawat Ali, Muhammad Dilshad Bajwa, Shahid Mehmood, Rafaqat Ali, Navid Anjum, Tayyab Kamran, Asif Mahmood, Mauhammad Irfan, Muhammad Ashfaq, Muhammad Ilyas, Sarfraz, Imran Aleem, Ghazanfar Ali, Muhammad Nadeem Akhtar, Shujat Ali, Shah Behram, Hafiz Sajad Jahangir, Asif Masih, Aamar Jamshed, Sajjad Karim, Bismillah Shah, Umar Hayat Ghoori, Muhammad Iqbal, Muhmmad Siddiqi, Ehsanul Haq, Muhammad Nawaz, Muhammad Imran, Faisal Shahzad, Shahzad Imran, Muhammad Qasim, Sohail Ahmad, Muhammad Sufayan, M Ishaq, Amar Mahmood, Muhammad Asif, Qurban Ali, Navid Ahmad, Muhammad Afzal, Mumtaz Ali, Usman Tariq, Liaqat Ali, Ikramul Haq, Muhammad Qurban, Wasim Saleem, Zulfiqar Ali, Aftab Alam, Sarfraz Ahmad, Muhammad Navid, Umer Rashid, Muhammad Khalil, Muhammad Hussain, Muhammad Sajjad, Naeen Gohar, Muhammad Imran, Tariq Hussain and Muhammad Arif.


Sharifs Use Courts To Avoid Paying Fair Share of Taxes

A division bench of the Lahore High Court on Wednesday barred the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) from recovering “Special Excise Duty” from three sugar mills of the Sharif family and directed it to file a reply till June 14.

The bench comprising Justice Umar Ata Bandial and Justice Asad Munir, issued the order on an intra court appeal filed by Ittefaq Brothers and Ramzan sugar mills challenging an order of a single bench wherein their writ petition challenging the special excise duty was dismissed. All the three sugar mills belong to Sharif family.


N-League Refuses To Pay Proper Taxes For Billboards

PML-N billboards

The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) Punjab government is causing a loss of millions of rupees to the national exchequer, as all political billboards of the party are installed without paying a single penny to the Parks and Horticulture Authority (PHA) and most of them violate the PHA Outdoor Publicity Policy framed to regularise outdoor advertisement in 2008, Pakistan Today has learnt.

Since the PML-N, led by Shahbaz Sharif, assumed power in Punjab in 2008, outsized billboards bearing big pictures of PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif, ministers and parliamentarians were installed on roads, rooftops and even in residential areas while all of them are untaxed and defy rules.

According to Punjab Gazette, copy of which is available with Pakistan Today, PHA laid down regulations in exercise of the power conferred under Section 44 of the Punjab Development of Cities Act 1976 with government notification No SO (P)-3-4/98 on September 21, 1998 when Shahbaz was enjoying his first stint as Punjab CM. The regulations ban all sort of billboards on roadside areas and rooftops that could disturb the skyline. They also prohibit installation of billboards in residential localities.

But a political billboard is placed on one side of the residence of Punjab Excise and Taxation Minister Mujtaba Shujaur Rehman at Cooper Store Locality near GT Road. Some hoardings carrying pictures of the PML-N leadership are affixed on an iron-made gate at the Garhi Shahu Bridge. Some billboards showcasing snaps of PML-N Member of the National Assembly (MNA) and Shahbaz’s son Hamza Shahbaz are installed on the rooftop at a building near the Lahore Hotel. Adding insult to injury, all of them were installed without the formal permission of PHA.

“Their presence in different parts of the city is mocking the Punjab government, which loves to talk about merit, impartiality, good governance and treating everyone, including itself, equal in compliance of law,” a senior PHA official told Pakistan Today. PHA Additional Director General Captain (r) Usman Younis said that he did not know anything about the issue, as he recently assumed office. Now, he has been tasked to renovate and establish parks on directions of PHA Director General (DG) Abdul Jabbar Shaheen. Younis said that he would look into the matter.

A senior PHA official told Pakistan Today that the Punjab government had deliberately kept the issue of political advertisement out of PHA regulations. “Although there are other political billboards of various political parties, including the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), but the real beneficiary is the PML-N, which has spread the billboards for blitz publicity,” he added. At the time of outlining the outdoor publicity policy, PHA officials suggested to tax political outdoor advertisement including billboards, hoardings, streamers and banners, another official said. “They opined that inclusion of recommendations had to rack up bumper revenue. But the issue was put on the backburner on the plea that it would open a new pandora box,” he added.

An official of the marketing department said that political parties, including the PML-N and the PPP, were not paying advertisement charges to the PHA for displaying billboards and other publicity stuff, as the outdoor publicity policy was silent in this regard. “Political parities put up billboards and banners whenever they have to welcome their leaders in their areas, sing praises of leadership steps, celebrate special occasions and stage protests. They spend huge money on preparation and installation of advertisement stuff but never pay a single penny to PHA to help increase revenue,” he added.

“We also cannot pull down outdoor publicity stuff of lawyers and journalists. We requested a private TV channel to remove rooftop billboards but had to face threats,” the official said. Some months ago, Shahbaz ordered to launch a campaign to remove all billboards from the city. The CM had instructed the PHA to get all billboards removed considering them a threat to the beauty and life of the people. PHA also planned to convert Mall Road into a free-board zone by removing all advertisement billboards erected on either side of the road to restore its original beauty.

The numbers of billboards were also reduced to maintain skyline of the city. PHA claimed to have removed all billboards installed in violation of the publicity policy but political hoardings remained untouched.