ISLAMABAD: The Additional Attorney General Tuesday submitted in the Supreme Court (SC) the audit report on the expenses, incurred by Pakistan Television during Ataul Haq Qasmi’s tenure as the chairman/ MD PTV.
The apex court granted two weeks time to Qasmi, for submission of objections on the audit report. A three-member SC bench, headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, heard the case regarding alleged illegal appointment of Qasmi to the state-run media facility.
During the hearing, the chief justice remarked that the court would decide if Ataul Haq Qasmi’s appointment as chairperson PTV was legal or not. However, he added, those who appointed him to the post might have to pay the expenses incurred by the organisation during his incumbency.
During the hearing, a PTV employee requested the chief justice to take suo motu notice of the issues facing PTV’s other employees as well. The chief justice, however, remarked that he had shunned taking suo motu notices.
The employee stated that she had read about it in the newspapers. The top court judge remarked whether he should take another suo motu notice on her request. The Additional Attorney General informed the SC bench that the audit report showed that the PTV chairman did not get any salary. The apex court was informed that the former PTV chairperson was entitled to using one official vehicle, but he used more than two vehicles as protocol.
The court was also informed that the PTV paid all expenses of Ataul Haq Qasmi including the Islamabad Club membership. The chief justice asked how much payment the organisation made for the membership.
The audit authority informed the court that the membership expenses were Rs1.5 million. Also, the former chairperson’s recreational expenses paid by the PTV were Rs2.3 million. The CJ said the guest house expenses of the former PTV chairperson were Rs2 million.
The court handed over the audit report copy to the counsel for Ataul Haq Qasmi, Ayesha Hamid, who requested the court for four weeks time to submit objections over the report. However, the chief justice gave him two weeks time. –Online
Jang Reporter adds: The audit report showed that the PTV had to incur Rs200 million during the period of Ataul Haq Qasmi as the chairman/ managing director PTV. The SC bench was headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar and consisted of Justice Umar Ata Bandyal and Justice Sajjad Ali Shah.
During the proceedings, the chief justice asked where was former information minister Pervaiz Rashid, who had appointed Qasmi as the chairperson PTV. He said a copy of the audit report should also be sent to him, as those who appointed Ataul Haq Qasmi as the PTV chairperson might have to pay the amount.
The chief justice remarked that all expenses amounting to Rs200 million incurred during Ataul Haq Qasmi’s incumbency might be recovered by dividing it equally on all those who were responsible for his appointment as the PTV chairperson.