Omni Group offered deal to banks to settle dispute over sugar, court told

Updated 21 Nov 2018

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Omni group's Khawaja Anvar Majeed.— DawnNewsTV/File
Omni group's Khawaja Anvar Majeed.— DawnNewsTV/File

KARACHI: A banking court was informed on Tuesday that the Omni Group was offering a deal to banks for dispute settlement pertaining to pilferage/disappearance of Rs11 billion worth of sugar stocks that had been pledged as security with banks by the group in return for loans taken from the banks.

Ten suspects — including Khawaja Anvar Majeed, Khawaja Mustafa Zulqarnain Majeed, Khawaja Ali Kamal Majeed, Khawaja Nimr Majeed, Rashid Ahmed Khan, Mohammad Zeeshan Khan and Sajjad Ahmed — have been nominated as accused by the National Bank, Silk Bank, Summit Bank, and Sindh Bank for pilferage of the pledged sugar stocks.

The banks had filed around 26 direct applications seeking registration of criminal cases against the CEOs/directors of eight sugar mills and imposition of penalties on them under Section 20 of the Institutions (Recovery of Finances) Ordinance, 2001.

When the matter was taken up before the banking court-III, Judge Muhammad Saad Qureshi asked the complainants to provide copies of the documentary evidence against suspects and fixed the matter for their indictment on Dec 6.

The judge also repeated non-bailable warrants for arrest of an absconding suspect who was reportedly abroad.

The judge expressed his displeasure over non-production of detained businessman Anvar Majeed, said to have been admitted to the National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases over health problems, and summoned his doctor.

The judge also directed Barrister Jamshed Malik to file his power of attorney on behalf of Majeed.

Meanwhile, Advocate Khawaja Naveed Ahmed, counsel for Sindh Bank, submitted that the Omni Group had proposed to settle the dispute with the complainant banks.

Under the proposal, the Omni Group had offered to give Rs1bn in cash, two sugar mills and two industrial plots to the banks, the counsel explained.

Mr Ahmed further informed that three banks — Sindh Bank, Summit Bank and Silk Bank — had agreed to the proposal while the National Bank of Pakistan had some reservations over it.

He maintained that the proposal was made before the Supreme Court, which had already asked the parties to finalise it.

The matter is likely to be taken up before the apex court on Dec 5 for passing an appropriate order in this regard, the counsel added.

Graft case against ex-PPP MPA

The administrative judge of the accountability courts on Tuesday accepted a reference against a detained former legislator belonging to the Pakistan Peoples Party and others regarding Rs55 million corruption.

The administrative judge transferred the reference to the accountability court-II for trial.

In the reference, the federal anti-graft watchdog mentioned Babul Bhayo, a former MPA from PS-12 Shikarpur, his driver Maqsood Bhayo and Afzal Bhayo as suspects in the reference.

The watchdog claimed that an inquiry was authorised against them on the basis of suspicious transactions made in the account of the former legislator by different contractors of Shikarpur district.

The accused with connivance of the contractors and representatives of the provincial works and services department had deposited huge amount in accounts of the accused, causing a loss to the tune of Rs55m to the national exchequer, it added.

Bhayo had failed to provide any lawful justification of the amount deposited in his account and the watchdog pleaded for his physical remand in order to complete investigation and other legal formalities, it added.

Published in Dawn, November 21st, 2018