KARACHI: The Sindh government has decided to refer graft cases against 37 town officers, including a grandson of the chief minister, to the anti-corruption department.
These officers were suspended by the Sindh Local Government Department on Monday over allegations of misappropriating billions of rupees in their accounts.
On Tuesday, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah while presiding over a cabinet meeting directed the authorities to refer the cases of the suspended town municipal officers (TMOs), including his own grandson, to the anti-corruption department.
An official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said most of these officers were the kith and kin of PPP ministers and leaders and almost all had been appointed on political grounds.
Read: Fight against corruption: Government to refer Sindh graft cases to NAB
The chief minister’s grandson, Ahsan Ali Shah, was working as the Sobho Dero TMO in the Khairpur district. He was actually a senior officer at the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation but was appointed in his home district and given huge funds for the town municipality, the official said.
Speaking to the media, Local Governments Minister Sharjeel Memon said the TMOs had not provided the details of the funds utilised in their areas despite repeated warnings.
He said that action was taken under RSO Act 2000 with a warning that the services of these officers would be terminated if they did not submit the details of their accounts. The officers had been issued show-cause notices on June 22 and again on June 27 but they did not respond, Memon added.
The officers suspended included PPP’s minority wing leader Lal Chand Ukrani’s son Amar Lal, Sakrand TMO Abdul Rasool Khoso, Sualehput TMO Mian Imran Andhair , Obaro TMOs Khalid Khan Kharoosh and Waqar Ahmed, Pano Aqil TMO Syed Javed Hasan Shah, Ghari Khero TMO Agha Amjad Ali Pathan, Tangwani TMO Baghan Khan Nandwani, Manjhand TMOs Liaquat Ali Bhatti and Abid Ali Khoso, Majid Anwar Sehar and Muhammad Ibrahim Umrani from Tando Adam, Waheed Panhiyar and Ejaz Ahmed Mallah from Mero Khan, Anisur Rehman Sayal of DMC Korangi, Zahoor Ahmed Lakhan of Nausheroferoz, Malir TMOs Syed Ejaz Ali Shah and Ayaz Hameedullah Baloch, Alamghir Junejo of Sanjharo, Samaro TMO Mehtab Ali Khawaja, Kunri TMOs Fayyaz Ali Shah and Syed Ali Haider Shah, and Syed Ali Mughari and Zainul Abideen Malik.
Read: Graft cases: SHC restrains NAB from arresting CMIT chief
Meanwhile, the cabinet meeting also approved the allotment of 9,000 acres of forest land in Shikarpur to Pakistan Army. Last month, the chief minister had allowed the land to be given to the army for distribution among the heirs of martyred soldiers and injured war veterans.
CM Shah also ordered strict implementation on the National Action Plan against terrorism in the province. He directed all investigation officers to utilise the services of newly established DNA testing labs at Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences in Jamshoro and Dow University in Karachi.
He told the home department to speed up the registration of seminaries in consultation with the interior ministry. There are 9,590 seminaries in the province with only 6,503 of them registered.
The meeting was held to discuss the overall law and order situation, registration of seminaries, the current heatwave and the budget for the 2015-16 fiscal.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 1st, 2015.