Saaf Pani scam: NAB files interim reference against 20 accused

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LAHORE: National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Lahore has filed an interim reference against 20 accused in the Saaf Pani Company scam for allegedly causing a loss of Rs345.282 million to the national exchequer, a statement issued by the bureau said Monday.

“The officers and officials are accused of awarding an illegal contract to KSB Pumps for the installation of 116 water filtration plants on exorbitant rates,” the press release said, adding that the accused, in connivance with consultants, also allegedly prepared engineering cost estimates at much higher rates whereas the weather shield applications on these plants were also found to be approved on exorbitant charges.

During the course of investigation, it was revealed that with mala fide intentions, a contract was awarded to KSB Pumps for installation of 82 water filtration plants on higher rates and without a proper approval of engineering estimates/technical sanction.

“The case findings revealed that civil, electrical and solar works were also executed at exorbitant rates during installation of water filtration plants in the Bahawalpur region, including the use of substandard material which was found below the required standard specifications.”

Taking cognisance over the allegations of corruption, NAB Lahore officials arrested 4 accused, namely Chief Technical Officer Dr Zaheeruddin, Chief Procurement Officer Nasir Qadir Badhal, Consultant Engineer M Saleem Akhtar and KSB Pumps Managing Director Muhammad Masud Akhter on April 17, 2018, which was followed by the arrest of Housing Deputy Secretary Khalid Nadeem Bukhari on May 2, 2018.

“The arrested individuals revealed that Raja Qamarul Islam and former CEO Wasim Ajmal were also involved and they were arrested on June 25, 2018.”

Later, the anti-graft watchdog arrested another five accused during the last week of November.

“These included former deputy secretary Zahoor Ahmed Dogar, ex-chief resident engineer Maj (r) Adnan Aftab Khan, Resident Engineer Syed Masoudul Hassan Kazmi, Resident Engineer Muhammad Moeenuddin and Resident Engineer Muhammad Younas.”