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Cheema acquired 32K land thru unfair means: NAB.

LAHORE -- NAB Punjab has accused former DG LDA, Ahad Cheema of acquiring 32 Kanals land in his name through unfair means.

NAB spokesman termed Punjab government's stance baseless and said that Punjab Land Development Company (PLDC) (a company owned by GoP), through an agreement on 20th Jan 2015, had assigned the project of Aashiana Iqbal (a low-cost housing project of Punjab government) to LDA.

Accused Ahad Cheema , being LDA director general, by misuse of authority prepared and got approved illegal request for proposal and bidding documents to grant undue benefit by awarding contract of Aashiana Iqbal Housing Project of Rs14 billion approximately to M/s Casa Developers, a joint venture (JV) of three firms/companies namely M/s Bismillah Engineering Services Co. M/s Sparco Construction Company and M/s China First Metallurgical Group Co. Ltd. In the said joint venture/consortium, M/s Bismillah Engineering Services Co, a C4 class company had 90 percent shareholding and was not eligible for the contract as its maximum limit of contract was Rs150 million as laid down by Pakistan Engineering Council.

While M/s Sparco Construction Company and M/s China First Metallurgical Group Co had only 9 percent and 1 percent shareholdings in the JV.

The accused awarded contract to M/s Lahore Casa Developers on 24th March 2015, under Public Private Partnership mood which is governed by PPP Act, 2014. As per section 14 (d), (h) and (j), it was mandatory to obtain exact shareholding of all firms in the joint venture , at the prequalification stage so as to ensure award of contract to eligible JV. However, accused in connivance with the members of JV and others, accepted an MoU between members of the JV/ Consortium having no mention of respective shareholding in order to maliciously conceal the technical and financial capability of the firm having maximum shareholding.

The accused awarded the contract to M/s Lahore Casa Developers by fraudulently awarding scoring points on the basis of technical and financial data of M/s Sparco Construction Company, which had only 9 percent shareholding in the JV. Accused in connivance with the accused contractors falsely represented M/s Sparco Construction Company as lead member of the JV, whereas, as per agreement dated 18 March 2015, the actual lead member of JV was M/s Bismillah Engineering Services Co which was ineligible for the contract.

Accused with malafide intentions did not comply with the direction of PPP Steering Committee, a legal forum constituted under PPP Act, 2014, regarding restriction on dilution of lead member shareholdings which caused dishonest loss to state exchequer.

The accused with criminal intent continued the process of awarding the contract even after submission of JV agreement by Lahore Casa Developers which revealed the actual shareholdings of JV members was in sheer violation of documents submitted at pre-qualification stage.

This act of the accused caused loss to national exchequer as the contractor willfully failed even to initiate Ashiana Iqbal Project for the last three years. Almost 61,000 poor applicants submitted Rs60 million approximately as processing fee for many years for allotment of houses, government incurred an amount of Rs190 million and the contractor M/s Casa Develops also caused loss in form of liquidation damages of Rs455 million approximately. In addition to that, the cost of the project also increased by hundreds of millions of rupees.

Director properties of M/s Paragon City (Pvt) Limited and a close aide/ associate of accused Nadeem Zia, received an amount Rs30.9 million approximately in his bank account No. 0010010627750021 maintained at Allied Bank Limited, Shadipura Branch, Lahore from the bank account No. 0010013691650013 of M/s Paragon City (Pvt) Limited maintained at DHA Lahore and same was paid for purchase of land measuring 32 kanal situated at Mouza Tedha, tehsil Cantt District Lahore. The said land was transferred in the name of accused Ahad Khan Cheema , the then DG LDA and his close family members namely Ahmad Saud Cheema (brother), Sadia Mansoor (sister) and Ahmad Hassan (cousin).
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Publication:The Nation (Karachi, Pakistan)
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Feb 26, 2018
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