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December 4, 2018

NAB files interim reference in Saaf Pani Company case


December 4, 2018

LAHORE: The National Accountability Bureau on Monday filed an interim reference against 20 persons including former director Saaf Pani Company Engineer Qamarul Islam and former CEO Waseem Ajmal, accused of awarding contracts at exorbitant rates causing a loss of Rs 345.282 million to the national kitty.

The NAB has filed the interim reference in accountability court against Chief Technical Officer Punjab Saaf Pani Company (PSPC) Dr Zaheer-ud-Din, Chief Procurement Officer Nasir Qadir Badhal, Consultant Engineer Saleem Akhtar and Managing Director KSB Pumps Muhammad Masud Akhter, Deputy Secretary Housing Khalid Nadeem Bukhari, Raja Qamarul Islam, former CEO Wasim Ajmal who were also got arrested, former Deputy Secretary Zahoor Ahmed Dogar, ex-Chief Resident Engineer Maj (Retd) Adnan Aftab Khan, Resident Engineer Syed Masoud-ul-Hassan Kazmi, Resident Engineer Muhammad Moeen-ud-Din and Resident Engineer Muhammad Younas.

The National Accountability Bureau had started investigations in the scam after receiving complaints of awarding an illegal contract to KSB Pumps for installation of 116 water filtration plants allegedly at exorbitant rates and malafide involvement of PSPC officials by means of corruption and corrupt practices which caused a collective loss amounting to Rs 345.282 million to the national exchequer. It was also alleged that the accused had prepared engineering cost estimates at much higher rates in connivance with consultants and officials of PSPC, whereas, weather shield applications on the plants were also approved at exorbitant rates.

The NAB’s inquiry against management of PSPC South and others subsequently converted into ‘Investigation’ on August 20, 2018.

Moreover, during the investigations, it was revealed that with malafide intentions a contract was awarded to KSB Pumps for installation of 82 water filtration plants at exorbitant rates and without proper approval of engineering estimates/technical sanction.

Furthermore, it was also revealed that illegal addendum of 36 additional filtration plants was also approved wherein the scope of the project was already changed. Later, case findings revealed that civil, electrical and solar works were also executed at exorbitant rates during installation of the water filtration plants in Bahawalpur region including the use of substandard material which was found below the required standard specifications.

The investigations against the accused persons further disclosed that the weather shield applied to external walls of filtration plants in Bahawalpur was also found marked at exorbitant rates, whereas, eight solar and grid-based filtration plants installed in tehsil Dunyapur were not included into the contract even in the list of four priority tehsils.

The National Accountability Bureau has accused that Raja Qamar being member of procurement committee of PSPC south awarded contracts at excessive rates to KSB Pumps. The NAB claims that the accused altered the contract documents after getting it approved from the board of governors.

The National Accountability Bureau has accused Waseem Ajmal of forging documents and issuing payments without taking approval from board of directors.

The accused being Chief Executive Officer approved payment of Rs24.7 million to the management of Ali and Fatima Developers Private Limited in lieu of office rents for Saaf Pani Company without the requisite approval of BOD despite the fact that the possession has not been taken till date.

Ali and Fatima Developers is owned by Ali Imran, son-in-law of former Chief Minister hahbaz Sharif. Moreover, Waseem Ajmal in a court hearing had alleged that former Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s orders were followed to install water filtration plants in Dunyapur tehsil of Lodhran district to get votes for the Pakistan Muslim League-N candidate in the December 2015 by-election against PTI’s Jahangir Tareen.

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