KARACHI: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Thursday detained the provincial excise secretary and the anti-corruption establishment director on corruption charges.
Informed sources told Dawn that NAB had issued notices to the officers to appear before the bureau to record their statements but they reportedly did not go there. Finally, the sources said, a NAB team visited the Sindh Secretariat and detained them from their respective offices on Thursday afternoon.
According to a spokesperson for NAB, former minorities affairs secretary Badar Jamil Mandhro, who is presently working as excise and taxation secretary, and former minorities affairs director Khadim Hussain Channa, who is currently working as anti-corruption establishment director, were arrested.
Being members of the departmental selection committee of the minorities affairs department, the suspects were found involved in “illegal recruitment” of 26 officers in the minorities affairs department through “illegal means after taking bribes and gratification”, said the NAB spokesperson.
They had “patronised and appointed ineligible candidates, relatives and friends of politicians purely on nepotism in violation of laid down rules and merit”, according to a NAB statement.
The sources told Dawn that the alleged illegal appointments were made during the financial year 2012-13. The appointments were made even in 17 grade, which was the domain of the Sindh Public Service Commission as officers in this or higher grades could not be appointed directly, the sources explained.
They disclosed that one such gazetted officer, who was directly appointed, happened to be a brother of the then provincial minister for minorities affairs.
The sources said that the excise secretary had already been facing a corruption reference, being investigated by NAB, pertaining to alleged usurpation of funds reserved for welfare of minorities community members and repair and looking after of their religious places.
The sources said the suspects were likely to be produced in court on Friday (today).
Published in Dawn, June 5th, 2015