ISLAMABAD: Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Ahsan Iqbal Monday deposited the entire assessed amount of the gifts that he retained from Toshakhana — when the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was in power in 2018.
In his letter to Cabinet Secretary Amir Ashraf Khawaja, Iqbal mentioned that he had taken three gifts from Toshakhana — a Rolex gents watch, a Rolex ladies' watch, and a carpet.
The assessed value of the men's watch was Rs1,550,000, the women's watch was Rs775,000, and the carpet was valued at Rs139,000, according to the letter.
In return, he paid Rs304,000, Rs149,000, and Rs20,000 for the aforementioned items. "I lawfully obtained the [...] articles after payment of the requisite amount to the Cabinet Division," he said.
But Iqbal said that even though he is "not required to make any additional payment for the same", he is paying the remaining amount to dispel "any misplaced allegation or even an iota of doubt that I wrongfully benefitted from the gifts".
The planning minister deposited a payment of Rs1,991,000 to the national kitty through a cheque.
The development came after in compliance with the orders of the Lahore High Court (LHC), the federal government Sunday made public the record of state officials who obtained Toshakhana gifts since 2002.
As per the details, Khan retained one watch (Graff No.AU750) 18-carat gold and diamond assessed value of Rs85 million, a pair of cufflinks (over Rs5.6m), one pen (Rs1.5m) and a ring (Rs8.7m) by depositing just Rs20.17m in Toshakhana.
Former president Asif Ali Zardari also retained various items including one BMW 760 Li (Security version, model No.2008) — assessed value Rs57,828,705 — and one Toyota Lexus LX 470 (Security version) — valued at Rs.50,000,000 by depositing a total of around Rs16.1m.
He also obtained another BMW 760 Li white (Security version) (Model No.2004) — valued at Rs27,339,370 — by depositing Rs4.09m.
In 2013, former prime minister Nawaz Sharif retained one Rolex Watch Oyster Perpetual N Series 0835D018 (over Rs1.18m), one pair of cufflinks with a pen (Rs0.025m) and four commemorative coins of the Central bank of Kuwait (Rs0.015m) by depositing Rs0.243m in Toshakhana.
In 2016, Nawaz Sharif’s wife, Kulsoom Nawaz, retained one bracelet valued at Rs12.7m, and one necklace and earrings (Rs41.6m) by depositing Rs10.8m.
Moreover, former premiers Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Yousaf Raza Gillani; former finance minister Sartaj Aziz; ex-president Pervez Musharraf; incumbent Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and others’ names are included in the list.
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