NLC scam: Army to investigate retired generals under Pakistan Army Act

Published: September 14, 2012
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ISPR says accused officers neither re-hired nor reinstated, no two different laws being applied to accused. PHOTO: FILE

ISPR says accused officers neither re-hired nor reinstated, no two different laws being applied to accused. PHOTO: FILE

RAWALPINDI: The senior retired Army officers, involved in the National Logistics Cell (NLC) scam, will be investigated under the Pakistan Army Act and “those proven guilty of wrongdoings will be brought to justice”, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said on Friday.

In a press release issued online, the ISPR said that it was for the first time in the history of Pakistan that senior retired officers have been recalled and subjected to “thorough process of investigation”.

“It was essential to bring the accused officers under PAA. Therefore, accused retired officers were taken on the strength of the Army. This was done in accordance with Pakistan Army Act Section 92, read in conjunction with Section 40,” the press release stated.

It added that the accused officers have neither been re-hired nor reinstated.

Clarifying media reports, the ISPR stated that the perception that the same nature of offence is being dealt with under two different laws in incorrect. “Military law world over, is inherently more strict and provides for expeditious disposal of the cases,” the statement said.

In July 2011, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) had directed the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to proceed against three former generals and two civilians for illegally investing Rs4.3 billion in the stock market and causing a Rs1.8 billion loss in the process. The investment-related decisions were taken by Lt Gen (retd) Khalid Munir Khan, Lt Gen (retd) Mohammad Afzal Muzaffar and Maj Gen (retd) Khalid Zaheer Akhtar.

Various inquiry reports have also held the then-chief finance officer NLC Saeedur Rehman responsible for the losses, along with another civilian.

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Reader Comments (22)

  • Nadir
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:02PM

    And can we stop the faccade of putting military pensions under civilian expenses and arguing that retired military personnel are civilians when, when it is convenient the Army jumps to protect their own?

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  • Chopper
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:19PM

    Kudos to the army. Justice will be done

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  • Awans
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:21PM

    Pakistan Army act in other words is the act to conceal all information from the media and that act is providing a safe passage for Businessmnn Generals. Sorry to say but now Pakistan Army is the most Professional in terms of Business but in terms of Defense they are the most Improvised, Non Professional and under trained Army in the world because of this attitude of our Generals.

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  • Asim Ali
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:30PM

    Zero tolerance on investigation and outcome. This is the only way to save the country

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  • M Arif
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:32PM

    well done Pak Army

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  • Khan of Cape Town
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:40PM

    If a civilian can be trailed under Army courts, then why not Army personals in civilian courts? Having said this, what is the authenticity of civilian courts now a days.

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  • rizwan
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:42PM

    why they are not investigated and tried in civilian court? are they not retired now?

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  • Farhan
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:46PM

    It’s a good step – if they made a mess while in uniform, they should be dealt with according to military law. Civilian courts will drag these cases along for years with no result. Court martials are needed.Recommend

  • khan
    Sep 14, 2012 - 4:58PM

    I take great pride in Pakistan Army.Most of the armed forces comprises on very honorable and professional soldiers.Such scandals bring a bad name to the army and tarnishes the image of the hard working soldiers.If army wants its staff to be held in the highest esteem than the trial of its officers has to be held in public by a civilian prosecutor.Otherwise no body will believe in there innocence.Lets not sacrifice the security of this country to protect a few generals.No war can be won without public support…

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  • Ali
    Sep 14, 2012 - 5:01PM

    @Awans: Section 40 states rigorous punishment extended up to 5 years. So under a civilian court this case would have taken years as do all cases in Pakistan. You would have cried foul about that as well. Let them prosecute these three and wait for the verdict. Then you can enlighten us with your in depth analysis on various issues.

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  • Taimoor
    Sep 14, 2012 - 5:18PM

    How many corruption cases civil courts have finalized till date and out of those, how many accused are sentenced? This is a question which one should always put forward when someone asks for trial by Civil court. Last day i was shocked to see on news that some Balochistan based politician. The extracts were,

    “During proceedings of a case lodged by the National Party’s (NP) Dr Yaseen with the BHC, the two member bench comprising Justice Jamal Mandokhel and Justice Ghulam Mustafa Mengal declared Ahsan Shah disqualified.The provincial minister contested elections in 2008 and won the Balochistan Assembly’s PB-48 Kech-I seat.”

    Now it took almost 5 years to ascertain whether the degree was fake or real? Its the most simplest case one can ever decide. So if it took High court 4.5 years to decide such a simple case, then it is for sure anticipated that they would take at least 8-10 years to decide a complicated case like NLC. So who so ever wants a civil trial for these culprits, they indeed want this case to be delayed for their own hidden motives.
    Lastly, Justice Delayed is Justic Denied is the motto of every court. Army courts have always been following this rule, but unfortunately Civil courts always tend to do the opposite.

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  • A. Khan
    Sep 14, 2012 - 5:59PM

    Nice try but this inquiry will be a white wash. Remember this is Pakistan. Been there, done that.

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  • Sep 14, 2012 - 6:03PM

    @ Nadir,

    Why shouldn’t retired military personnel be considered civilians? They are no longer part of the armed forces at that point and are free to pursue non-military careers.

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  • Pakistani Pashtoon
    Sep 14, 2012 - 6:04PM

    these are retired generals and these should be tried under civilian courts not army, army is no sacred cow

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  • rashid khan
    Sep 14, 2012 - 7:32PM

    @Khan of Cape Town and Pakistani Pashtoon
    Do you’ll recall the Tando Bhawal incident, the army personnal were tried by military courts without the interference of civilians, The officer involved, a captian at the time, was given death sentence and hung, the other military personal were given varous sentences including life imprisonment,
    Now can anyone of you smart alecs recall the sentences awarded civil courts to the civilians involved and how long did it take the same courts to award the sentences.
    So it would be advisable to hold your wisdom till the military courts have had an oppurtunity to complete their process.

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  • Khalq e Khuda
    Sep 14, 2012 - 7:47PM

    Another farce is in order! Only civilians and politicians are accountable while Generals and Judges can commit high treason through PCOs and gamble away billions of tax payer’s money only to get a free pass if they get caught.

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  • rana aaieze
    Sep 14, 2012 - 8:03PM

    if a son of ex PM on serving president ZAB may become accused then why not Gens/their sons.

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  • Mirza
    Sep 14, 2012 - 8:21PM

    When the army surrendered more than half the country how many people in the army were punished? What about the generals committing multiple acts of high treason? Let us not get euphoric till the cases are decided if ever or buried like all previous cases against the deep state. Recommend

  • Umar
    Sep 14, 2012 - 8:56PM

    Just because of some few person the whole army is under accusation

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  • Muhammad Yaqub
    Sep 15, 2012 - 12:24AM

    Obviously the Army will never take any action against its Generals. The Generals have always been above the Law (both civilian and Army Laws). The day the Army Court Martials Gen Zia and Musharaf for breaking the constitution of the country, that day justice will finally come back to the Army !

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  • Sep 15, 2012 - 10:18AM

    @M Arif: ;

    the Army has taken up these cases/ irregularities when there was pressure on them by the civilian democratic set up . Otherwise the army could have chosen to prosecute much earlier.
    “So NO well done Army”

    Also the problem with the Army courts is that their proceedings are not transparent and when the same is not available obviously it can not be evaluated too on the basis of law and justification of the verdict also remain unknown.

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  • Gulkhaiz
    Sep 15, 2012 - 12:45PM

    Kiyani has taken a courageus and right decision by starting the court martial of the general officers. There is nothing to hide, and actually the decision has enhanced the image of the army. Even the gross negligence and inefficieny is corruption.Moreover, when the commanders (and leaders of the national institutions)ensure the rule of the law and accountability in their outfits, all stake holders develop more confidence in the working of the army( and national institutions) Furthermore it reflects on the maturity and intellectual strength of the command at all levels.Good . Keep it up

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