No action against generals yet


Setting aside the directives of Public Accounts Committee (PAC), the Planning Commission (PC) has not taken tangible steps to initiate action against the three retired generals involved in Rs 1.84 billion National Logistic Cell (NLC) scam, despite the passage of two weeks.
After waiting seven months for a GHQ probe report into the fraud, the PAC on July 1 had directed the PC secretary to refer the matter to the defence secretary to initiate disciplinary action against the retired army officers in accordance with the applicable rules for a blatant violation of government rules and regulations during their tenure in office as per the specific charges spelt out in Hamid Hasan’s report on the NLC scam. Chief of Army Staff Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani had ordered a three-star serving general in November 2010 to conduct a probe into the scam but the military failed to submit a report before the June 30 deadline set by the PAC.
The PAC had also asked the Planning Commission to refer the case to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for a detailed investigation, saying the three retired Generals were guilty of lapse of discipline, lack of transparency and blatant violation of government rules and regulations during their tenure.
The retired generals – Lt Gen (r) Khalid Munir Khan, Lt Gen (r) Mohammad Afzal Muzaffar and Maj Gen (r) Khalid Zaheer Akhtar – were held responsible in an audit report and later on in an inquiry conducted by Hamid Hassan Butt.
The generals, while serving in the National Logistics Cell (NLC), obtained illegal and unauthorised loans of Rs 4.3 billion during 2004-2008 to make investments in the stock market. The move was in clear violation of government rules and the NLC’s investment policy and resulted in loss of Rs 1.84 billion.
It is worth mentioning that the NLC is a subsidiary of the Planning Commission but is dominated by army officers.
The PAC had also directed the Planning and Development Division secretary to send similar instructions to the counterpart in the Cabinet Division in respect of Saeedur Rehman, former chief finance officer of NLC, as the official is now working as Member Finance in the CDA. But contrary to the instructions, the government extended his employment contract.
When contacted, Nadeem-ul-Haq, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman, said he had no information about initiating any action against the generals.