Former CHK head, five others acquitted in Rs6.5m graft case

Dawn

KARACHI: An accountability court on Saturday exonerated a former medical superintendent of the Civil Hospital Karachi and five others from charges of embezzling Rs6.588 million funds meant for medicines procurement.
Dr Mirza Raza Ali, the then CHK MS; Nazeer Ahmed Arain, owner of the hospital’s pharmacy and four distributors — Mansoor Ahmed Khan, Muhammad Ismail Junejo, Mohammad Moiz Kashmiri and Adnan Ahmed Siddiqui — were acquitted by Judge Farid Anwer Qazi of the Accountability Court-IV.
The court pronounced its verdict reserved earlier after recording evidence and final arguments from both sides.
They were charged with colluding with each other for managing award of a contract to a private firm for injections/medicines without participating in bidding, issuing fake bills and embezzling Rs6.588m.
An accountability court has jailed an education official for seven years for regularising jobs of 140 teachers
The judge acquitted them of the charges levelled against them by the National Accountability Bureau as it failed to establish its case beyond a shadow of a doubt.
The trial against their alleged absconding accomplice Shahzad Ali Khan was kept on dormant file until his arrest or surrender.
NAB had filed a reference in 2010 mentioning that the Sindh finance department allocated Rs65m for drugs/medicines procurement for the largest public health facility in the metropolis in the fiscal year 2003-04. It further mentioned that Dr Ali being the then medical superintendent of the hospital misused his authority and purchased injections from M/s Star Distributors by acquiring 50 Berirab P injections, total cost of which was Rs263,500, without adhering to the Sindh Purchase Manual 1991, as the firm did not participate in the bidding process.
It further said that the accused in collusion with each other prepared fake medicines supplies bills/invoices along with indents, received amount in their bank accounts, thus causing losses of Rs6.588m to the national exchequer and distributed the same among themselves.
However, the defence counsel had denied the allegations and pleaded innocence on part of the accused persons.
They contended that the reference was based on mala fide intentions and the allegations were false and fabricated.
Education official jailed for seven years
Judge Dr Sher Bano Karim of the AC-III on Saturday sentenced former director-schools Karachi Muhammad Sajjad Mallah to seven-year imprisonment for illegally regularising 140 teachers in the education and literacy department in 2016.
Pronouncing the verdict reserved after recording evidence and final arguments from both sides, the judge also imposed a fine of Rs4.85 million on the convict.
According to the prosecution, an investigation revealed that the accused had no authority to issue orders for regularisation of the employees, but he illegally and with mala fide intention issued job regularisation letters in the name of humanitarian grounds.
It further stated that the regularisation orders were found to be false and concocted as the same were not supported by any record from the office of the education and literacy department.
It said the alleged medical fitness certificates issued by the health department were also found to be fake and bogus.
The defence counsel denied the allegations levelled against his client.

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