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NAB seeks time to file reference against ex-KPT chairman

NAB seeks time to file reference against ex-KPT chairman

KARACHI: An accountability court on Monday expressed displeasure over the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for failing to file a reference against former Karachi Port Trust (KPT) chairman Muhammad Javed Hanif who has been arrested for his alleged involvement in illegal appointments.

The investigation officer informed the judge that the reference has been prepared and sent to NAB chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal for approval.

He said the Bureau is to arrest another accused former Minister of Port and Shipping Babar Khan Ghauri who allegedly assisted the KPT chairman in making these illegal appointments. He sought time to file the reference.The hearing of the case, therefore, was adjourned till July 27.

According to a statement issued by the Bureau earlier, “The accused was wanted in an investigation on charges of corruption, corrupt practices and abuse of authority for illegally appointing 940 employees in KPT in connivance with [the MQM’s] Babar Ghauri, the then minister for ports and shipping.”

The appointments were made in violation of KPT law, rules and regulations. “Without advertisement of vacancies, competitive process, age criteria, medical examination of appointees and in violation of basic formalities”.

A large number of those appointed had a criminal record in serious cases such as “terrorism, premeditated murder and robbery” said the Bureau, and that the illegal appointments resulted in losses to the national exchequer to the tune of Rs 2.8 billion.