KARACHI: The Sindh government departments have illegally deposited Rs94.236 billion in private bank accounts in sheer violation of rules and regulations to get maximum profits, Pakistan Today has learnt.
The shocking revelation came after the Finance Division of the federal government sought details of individual accounts of all the departments/agencies of Sindh government that were maintained in commercial/scheduled banks.
Sources said that the Sindh Finance Department carried out an extensive exercise in coordination with the State Bank of Pakistan to find out the accounts. Consequently, the finance department was able to trace out a total of 28,388 bank accounts in which more than Rs94.236 billion had been kept with a maximum profit margin.
In this regard, Sindh’s Acting Finance Secretary Asif Jahangir forwarded a detailed summary to Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, who also holds the portfolio of finance minister, for action against the violation done by administrative secretaries of almost all the departments.
“Consequently, all departments concerned were provided respective details of accounts and informed that all such accounts, if opened, without plausible justification and without the approval of the competent authority, are against financial discipline and in violation of Sindh government policy. Accordingly, all government departments are required to invariably place their funds either with the National Bank of Pakistan or Sindh Bank Limited,” the summary stated.
This was followed by a number of meetings with departments concerned to bring the matter to its logical conclusion. But almost all the Sindh departments failed to take appropriate action and report any progress in the matter.
Furthermore, the finance department did not accord any permission for opening of any account in commercial banks.
“All these accounts pertain to public sector banks only and maybe in the past, permission would have been given in special circumstances and with certain conditions. But in that case, too, the concerned administrative department which maintains the account has to confirm its status and provide justification to continue it,” they added.
Asif Jahangir said that all the departments concerned were once again asked to furnish details of individual accounts maintained in commercial banks with a deadline of three days which has also passed. “No fruitful response has been received from any quarter as yet,” the secretary added.
Sources said that the finance minister has been requested to take stern action against all the administrative secretaries who have been involved in the violation of the finance discipline.