Wheat stock misappropriation causes Rs6.2b loss: NAB

The News

ISLAMABAD: The national exchequer had to suffer Rs6.2 billion loss due to misappropriation of wheat stock at Provisional Reserve Centres (PRCs) in seven different districts of Sukkur region.

According to National Accountability Bureau (NAB) sources, during the investigation NAB teams found that total 1,911,356 wheat bags were missing from PRCs in Sukkur, Larkana, Ghotki, Khairpur, Naushehro Feroze, Kashmore, Kandhkot, Kambar Shadadkot.

The director general NAB Sukkur had authorised seven inquiries against officers/officials of Food Department and others on the allegations of misappropriation of wheat stock at the PRCs, the sources said.

Subsequently, separate teams conducted raids in the presence of respective judicial magistrates at the PRCs and found hundreds of thousands of wheat bags missing from there. “Majority of wheat stock piles at various flour mills and PRCs were only covered with 01x/02x government wheat bags and inner part of the pile was either filled with rice chaff (protecting covering of rice grains) or private wheat bags,” the sources said, adding some of the piles were half empty.

During the investigation, various accused applied for plea bargain under Section 25(b) of NAO to return the illegal gains.

Accused Haresh son of Hundo Mall and owner of 3x flour mills in district Khairpur, which had been declared as government PRCs, has submitted an application for plea bargain under Section 25 (b) of National Accountability Ordinance (NAO) 1999 for total loss of Rs452 million. His plea bargain application has been accepted and forwarded to the Accountability Court Sukkur for approval.

In addition to this, all the mill owners of District Ghotki have also submitted applications for plea bargain under Section 25 (b) of NAO for total loss of Rs1.1 billion, which are under process.

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