NICL scam: SC to resume hearing in Rs5.34b land scandal

Apex court has summoned attorney general, FIA DG for May 24 hearing.

Asad Kharal May 22, 2012


The Supreme Court has summoned the attorney general (AG) of Pakistan, Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) director general (DG) and Punjab and Sindh directors to appear before the court on May 24 while hearing the suo motu case of the National Insurance Company Limited’s (NICL) Rs5.34 billion scam.

The apex court also served a notice on FIA’s former additional DG Zafar Ahmed Qureshi, who was the chief investigation officer of the multi-billion rupee land scandal, The Express Tribune has learnt.

A three-member bench, slated to hear the case on May 24, will be headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.

After receiving the Supreme Court notices, FIA headquarters in Islamabad also directed the agency’s Punjab and Sindh directors as well as other team members to prepare progress/updated reports for the case investigating the violation of public procurement rules, which caused losses worth billions of rupees to the exchequer.

The FIA has failed to take any legal action despite the fact that the first post-dated cheque worth of Rs42 million presented by one of the accused, Akram Warraich – a director/shareholder of Farms Pvt Limited Company – bounced. The NICL’s management has asked the FIA in writing to take legal action against the accused.

Accused Habibullah Warraich, Akram Warraich and Mohsin Habib Warraich collectively owe Rs420 million to the NICL. Rather than paying in cash, they provided 10 cheques to the NICL worth Rs42 million each.

Akram Warraich on behalf of Privilege Farms Pvt Limited Company had presented these 10 post-dated cheques to the apex court as guarantee to ensure recovery of the remaining liable amount from Habibullah Warraich and other accused. After this assurance, the court granted conditional bails to the accused.

FIA’s Punjab chapter has not arrested any of the remaining accused yet including principal beneficiary Mohsin Habib Warraich – son of former state minister for defence production Major (retd) Habibullah Warraich – two former directors of the NICL board of directors Qasim Amin Dada and Javed Syed.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 22nd, 2012.


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