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ISLAMABAD: The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) convened an in-camera meeting on July 11, where a list of 620 individuals/companies will be examined who obtained soft loans with mark-up subsidy offered in the Temporary Economic Refinance Facility (TERF) loan scheme during the previous Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government.

Noor Alam Khan chaired the meeting which examined the audit report of the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Inter-Faith Harmony for 2019-20.

The report could not be placed before the committee as the secretary was not well.

The chairman tasked Senator Saleem Mandviwalla in case the National Assembly dissolved by that time, the list of 620 whom Rs398 billion had been disbursed under TERF should be examined in the Senate Standing Committee on Finance.

Noor Alam further alleged that the committee was misguided as the mark-up subsidy on loan was given at three percent in some cases.

It was unclear whether the scheme had been approved by the competent authority like the prime minister, finance minister, Federal Cabinet etc.

Member Committee Barjees Tahir also sought the details of penalties imposed on eight commercial banks which were found involved in the alleged opening of LCs at fake exchange rate of the rupee against the US dollars.

He alleged that these banks opened LCs at Rs180 against the US dollar when the dollar rate was Rs130. Saleem Mandviwalla said that central banks only served notice to them and further action against them is required.

The committee further sought response from the Ministry of Interior and the NADRA and the PTA for the disclosure of the family trees of politicians, army officials and the general public on social media. He asked them how the personal/classified information of families was public on the internet.

He further directed the ministry to cancel the licences of private Hajj operators who were found in providing substandard facilities during Hajj.

Earlier, the committee expressed its utter displeasure over problems faced by Hujjaj during the Hajj despite deputing 200 government persons and a number of complaints received in this respect.

He further lauded the arrangements made by the former Religious Minister Mufti Abdul Shakoor during Hajj.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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