PTCL’s Privatization is a Large Scale Scandal: Chief Justice

Chief Justice of Pakistan, Justice Iftikhar Chaudary, while hearing a petition regarding privatization of PTCL, has termed PTCL’s privatization as a large scale scandal, reported ‘Daily Jang’ today.

While noting its observations, honorable court said that buyer was given concessions while it breached the agreement.

CJ is going to chair a bench of three Judges to hear the case from October 19th, 2009.

On petition filed by Malik Maqbool, General Secretary PTCL Line’s staff, CJ summoned all applications regarding the privatization of PTCL, and said they will be settled collectively during proceedings.

Court has asked PTCL for response over the petition, while Secretary Privatization has also been summoned in next hearing.

General Secretary PTCL Line’s staff informed that 26 percent shares of PTCL were sold in year 2005 for a value of 2.599 billion dollars, with administrative control, to Etisalat. Petitioner noted that PTCL earned net profit of Rs. 29.4 billion in year 2004, while company incorporated 75,000 employees then. After privatization, the profit has squeezed down to 9 Rs. Billion only, further said the petitioner.

It was noted that Etisalat had to pay USD 2.599 billion in 30 days – but in April 2006, agreement was re-settled and payment was scheduled in installments, which Etisalat is still paying.

Justice Jawad S Khawaja mentioned that Agreement was not entertained at all, instead of taking action against the buyer, it was offered with incentives and concessions.

PTCL employees’ petitions will be coupled with the privatization application, in principal.