Owing to the government’s failure in reinstating him and in compliance with Supreme Court orders, Zafar Qureshi has, on his own, assumed charge as managing director of the National Police Foundation (NPF) and Additional Director General FIA. He will also lead the investigation into the National Insurance Company Limited (NICL) corruption case.
According to officials, Qureshi had sent two letters to the interior secretary demanding an implementation of the Supreme Court’s order but after receiving no reply he took charge of the posts on Thursday. After taking charge, Qureshi sent another letter to Director General Federal Investigation Agency to make sure all members of the team probing the NICL scam attend a meeting held at NPF office on Friday at 10 am with complete case files.
All five members of the investigation team however have gone on leave – a move, officials say, aimed at disrupting the investigation process in view of Qureshi’s reinstatement as lead investigator.
The five members are Deputy Director FIA Corporate Crime Circle Syed Javed Hussain Shah, Assistant Director FIA Anti Corruption Circle Khalid Anees, Deputy Director FIA Commercial Banking Circle Basharat Mehmood Shahzad, Assistant Director Muhammad Ahmed Chaudhry and Inspector Sarwar.
Shah has gone on a six-day casual leave, Anees has gone on a four-day leave while Shahzad has gone for Umra on a 22-day ex-Pakistan leave, sources said. Shah and Anees were not present in their offices even before they left on leave. Chaudhry and Sarwar too have gone on a ten-day leave, officials said.
Meanwhile, Assistant Director FIA Legal Wing Zia Islam, who has been pursuing the NICL case in court, will be substituted with Assistant Director Chaudhry Zulifqar at the request of Chaudhary Shujaat Hussain and Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi, officials said.
Following Qureshi’s reappointment on July 1st, 2011 on the Supreme Court’s orders, DG FIA on the same day transferred four officers of the investigation team to the far-flung areas of the country with a pretext to hinder the investigation, officials said.
The Supreme Court however issued a notification cancelling the transfer of the officers but sources say a similar episode is being repeated now as the main reason behind the officers going on leave is to suspend the investigation process.
Meanwhile, DG FIA has issued a notification for the reinstatement of Qureshi as Additional DG FIA only for the purpose of conducting investigation into the NICL scam, sources said.
(With additional input from our correspondent in Lahore)
Published in The Express Tribune, August 12th, 2011.