Friday December 03, 2021

Govt orders crackdown on sugar mafia

July 28, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The federal government Monday directed the authorities concerned to launch a crackdown on the sugar mafia in light of the sugar inquiry commission report and submit implementation report in next 90 days.

Prime Minister's Adviser on Accountability and Interior Mirza Shahzad Akbar has written separate letters to the governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP), chief secretaries of Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Sindh to launch the crackdown.

The sugar inquiry commission report has also been annexed with the letters written after seeking consent of the Prime Minister Imran Khan. The federal cabinet has already accorded consent to action plan on June 23, to implement the sugar commission report.

According to a press release, the federal government also sought a clarification from the CCP over delay in action against the sugar cartels. The CCP will investigate matters like sugar hoarding and non-supply of sugar at the utility stores.

The Federal Board of Revenue has been directed to conduct an audit of all sugar mills across the country to investigate the matters related to Benami accounts, dubious transactions and tax evasion.

In the light of the letter, the SBP governor has been directed to investigate into sugar mills loans and dubious exports and submit a comprehensive report in this regard. The FIA and Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan have been tasked with probing corporate fraud and the export issue of sugar mills. Likewise, the National Accountability Bureau has been directed to fix the responsibility under the facts of sugar commission report.

The anti-corruption watchdog has also been tasked to analyse the aspects of subsidies which went against laws. The departments concerned would also investigate the reportedly given loans on interest and short payments to sugarcane growers despite receiving hefty subsidies from the government.