Today the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) broke the news that it had set free 2 bureaucrats from Balochistan who were accused of amassing Rs. 40 billion through corrupt practices.
The two Balochistan-based bureaucrats included Mushtaq Ahmed Raisani, the then finance secretary of Balochistan, and Sohail Majeed Shah, contractor and frontman of ex-adviser to Chief Minister Balochistan.
They were both caught by NAB a few months back with Rs. 730 million at Raisani’s house. The executive board meeting (EBM) of NAB had put his corruption figure at Rs. 40bn during that time.
Strangely the two individuals were let off after the anti-corruption watchdog struck a plea bargain with them for Rs. 3.25 billion approximately, according to NAB Director General Zahir Shah, who spoke with the media.
He mentioned that:
“NAB will not keep a penny from this… nor does it ever [keep the recovered amount].”
It was also mentioned that the recovered money is handed over to the provincial authorities via chief secretaries.
Breakdown Of Recovery
Raisani gave up Rs. 653 million in cash and another Rs. 13.5 million in gold (measuring 3.3 kg) to the agency. Following a raid on his home at May, these things had been recovered.
In addition to that, Raisani’s two properties at Quetta and Karachi’s DHA were also surrendered. The two properties were valued at Rs60 million and Rs70 million respectively.
Thats not all, as NAB also added that a further 11 properties from both Majeed and Raisani were also seized. Most of them (11 precisely) were located in DHA and valued at Rs. 1.25 billion, with residential plots, commercial plazas and houses included in them.
These properties are expected to fetch Rs1-2 billion for the national exchequer.
Two luxury cars were also seized, include Toyota Grande and Mercedes Benz, with a value of Rs. 8 million apiece.
Sohail Majeed Shah, contractor and frontman of Khalid Lango, ex-adviser to Chief Minister Balochistan, surrendered as much as Rs. 960 million that was deposited in his various accounts. He also had to give up a couple of ‘valuable’ houses that he owned.
Given all these assets, NAB said that they will freeze their accounts and will let them go after the recovery of Rs. 3.25 billion from the two ‘gentlemen’ in question.
We could go on and on about how obscene the amount of properties and valuables owned by both the bureaucrats from Pakistan’s ‘most deprived province’ are, but the fact of the matter is – how come they’ve been let off so easily and how they’ve amassed so much money in the first place?
Is it corruption that made it so that the terms of the plea bargain were smaller compared to the original Rs. 40bn figure that NAB charged them with?
So many unanswered and pressing questions continue to remain.