ISLAMABAD, Nov 24: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has sought the Pakistan Railways record seized by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA).
According to sources, NAB Chairman Admiral (retd) Fasih Bokhari has written a letter to the head of the FIA in this regard.
They said NAB had launched investigations into irregularities in railways and allotment of its land, including the Royal Palm Golf Club case.
“The record has been demanded from the FIA because before NAB the agency was assigned to investigate the case,” a NAB official said.
He said a team sent by the NAB chairman to Lahore had started the investigation and it “will remain there until the probe is completed”.
The case of the Royal Palm Golf and Country Club in Lahore is in the Supreme Court but “NAB can investigate it as part of a comprehensive investigation into the downfall of railways”, the official said.
Admiral Bokhari ordered the inquiry on Nov 14 into allegations of misappropriation, embezzlement and misuse of authority in the railways.
“The inquiry has been ordered in compliance of an order issued by the Supreme Court on Nov 14,” a NAB spokesman said. The inquiry will also determine the responsibility of the officials concerned in the corruption cases.
President Asif Ali Zardari has also taken notice of the railways' downfall and presided over a meeting on the issue.
A comprehensive report issued a few months ago by the National Assembly's Special Committee on Railways on allotment of land for setting up the club in Lahore revealed several financial and administrative irregularities and recommended prosecution of all members of the railways executive committee.
The FIA had started the investigation on the special committee's instruction. The report said 141 acres had been allotted at a nominal price, causing a loss of Rs4.82 billion to the national exchequer because the land utilisation charge had been reduced from Rs52.43 to only Rs4 per square yard.
It said the construction of a hotel was not mentioned in the terms of reference finalised on April 20, 2001.
The Supreme Court is also hearing a case about the purchase of over 500 locomotives.