LAHORE: The National Accounta­bility Bureau has arrested a man described by the bureau as the prime accused in the Rs16 billion DHA City (Lahore) scam.

The bureau is also looking into the role of a brother of a former army chief as a ‘facilitator and beneficiary’ in the shoddy deal.

NAB says that Hammad Arshad, owner of Globaco (Pvt) Ltd, has been arrested on charges of corruption and cheating people.

The bureau is also investigating the role of a brother of a former army chief as a facilitator and beneficiary in the shoddy deal

“Hammad Arshad offered his service and executed an agreement with DHA EME (Lahore) in Nov 2009 wherein parties agreed to develop DHA City on land measuring 25,000 kanals. His company —Globaco — was assigned the responsibility to acquire the required land but he failed to honour the agreement. Instead of having purchased the land agreed upon by the parties, he purchased only 13,103 kanals and that too in scattered form.

“He issued allotment letters and collected money from the general public to the tune of Rs15.47bn. Later, Arshad transferred the money to his personal accounts and used it for his personal gains and invested in other business ventures,” NAB alleged.

It said no development work was carried out in the society. By doing so, Hammad Arshad cheated the general public and families of soldiers and Shuhada and deprived them of their hard-earned money.

“So far there are more than 11,715 registered affectees with the DHA. The DHA Lahore, being principal aggrieved, on behalf of all affectees, lodged a formal complaint with NAB. A formal inquiry has been authorised in NAB Lahore,” the bureau said, adding that the role of Elysium Holdings Pakistan Limited of Kamran Kayani as well as other companies and accused in “abatement of the crime is being investigated”.

Hammad Arshad will be produced before an accountability court on Friday for obtaining his physical remand.

NAB has been investigating the matter for a few months.

“We are also looking into the role of other beneficiaries in the case and will lay hand on them once the investigation is complete,” an official told Dawn.

He said a reference in the case would be filed against the accused in three months.

Last year NAB had issued a notice to Kamran Kayani, the younger brother of former army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, in connection with an investigation into the alleged illegal sale of allotment certificates of DHA Islamabad.

A formal inquiry was initiated by NAB against Elysium Holdings Pakistan Limited in April 2015 for its alleged involvement in the sale of allotment certificates for the DHA farmhouse project scam amounting to Rs500 million.

NAB’s spokesman Nawazish Ali refused to respond to Dawn’s query about the current status of the DHA farmhouse project scam.

Published in Dawn, January 8th, 2016