NLC scam

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Gen Kayani has announced the formation of a high level enquiry committee to probe into reports about an NLC scam involving two Lt Generals and one Major General causing loss of billions of rupees to the national exchequer. Reports about the scam have been appearing in the media for nearly a year now. Meanwhile, no notice was taken of the matter by the army and when Gen Kayani belatedly spoke on the issue a few weeks back, he didnt go beyond clarifying that the NLC was not a military organization and should not pose as such. All this time no suo motu notice of the reports was taken by the courts which, we are repeatedly reminded, are determined not to allow anyone looting the national exchequer. Similarly, the FIA which is ever ready to root out corruption declined to pick up the hot potato confirming to many that our accountability bodies spring into action only when those charged with corruption are civilians.

The matter had landed up at the PAC in January this year with three enquiry reports establishing the involvement of the generals in the scam. These reports were, however, discreetly kept under the wraps for months. Under pressure from media Ch Nisar finally dropped a hint in the last meeting of the Committee that he would announce certain sweeping measures to hold the three military generals accountable when the matter would be taken up in the first week of December. This presumably ruffled feathers at the GHQ which then decided to conduct a military enquiry into the misdeeds of a civilian body working under the Planning Commission. We are told that appropriate action would be taken in line with army rules and regulations. That those involved are former military top brass matters little as after retirement they are considered civilians and, therefore, are not eligible to draw pensions from the defence budget. Why shouldnt they be treated in accordance with the law of the land by the concerned civilian agency then? What is the need for a fresh enquiry in the presence of early enquiries that have held the three retired generals culpable?

It remains to be seen how the PAC reacts to the decision. The general public, meanwhile, will keep its fingers crossed as it awaits the findings of the military committee.