ISLAMABAD: The Accountability Court hearing multi-billion rupees fake banks accounts case, on Monday, granted a nine-day physical remand of an accused of misappropriation in Sindh tractor subsidy scam.
Accountability Court-I judge Muhammad Bashir, while hearing the case, extended the physical remand of accused Ghulam Sarwar following request of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) till June 30th.
At the start of the hearing, NAB Investigation Officer (IO) Waqar Ahmed produced accused Sarwar before the court for obtaining extension in physical remand of the accused.
The IO requested the court to extend physical remand of the accused to conduct further investigation from him.
The court approved the NAB request and extended Sarwar’s physical remand till June 30th.
The bureau had arrested three former Sindh government employees including Tara Chandh, Sarwar, and Altaf Chachar, in the Sindh tractor subsidy reference.
The NAB, during the previous hearing, claimed that through fake Computerised National Identity Cards (CNICs), tractors were released in the name of fake farmers and then sold in the open market.
Accused, Ghulam Sarwar had obtained 450 tractors and Tara Chand 250 tractors, which incurred millions in losses to the national exchequer, the NAB prosecutor told the court.
According to the joint investigation team (JIT) report on fake accounts, during the investigation into the fake accounts, it was found out that one of the fake entities, M/s Iqbal Metals, belonging to a deceased sanitary worker was transacting with Orient Automotive Industries (Pvt) Ltd – a tractor manufacturer of the Omni Group.
On this, the JIT landed into the investigation of the associated scam vis-à-vis misappropriation by Omni Group of tractor subsidies offered by the government of Sindh through the Sindh Bank.
It says that the Sindh government initiated annual tractor subsidy schemes for poor farmers in the years, 2013 to 2016.
Total subsidies amounting to Rs1,996.2 million were given.
51 percent of the subsidy amounting to Rs1,021.2 million was dished out to tractors manufacturer of Omni Group (IMT & MTW), through a manipulated (queue jumping) technique of first come, first serve.
The report says that Sindh Bank was primarily used to manipulate the allotment of tractors to farmers in collusion with mainly three dealerships viz Tara Chandh, Sarwar, and Altaf Chachar.
These dealers would collect CNIC copies of their own persons, make down payment pay-orders, and deposit with applications to the managers of Sindh Bank prior to the start of the annual scheme, it says.
As per the report, when the annual scheme would be announced, genuine applications were denied on the ground that requisite number of applications has already been received.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021