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Police to help NAB arrest ex-Ogra chief

December 21, 2012

LAHORE, Dec 20: A special police team has been constituted and attached with the NAB along with logistic and technical support for the arrest of former Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) chairman Touqeer Sadiq.

A high-level coordination meeting of top officers of different law-enforcing agencies was held at the Lahore Police Club on Thursday in compliance with the direction of the Supreme Court to arrest the accused.

Inspector General of Punjab Police Habibur Rehman presided over the meeting while National Highways & Motorways Police IG Zafar Abbas Lak, Punjab Special Branch Additional IG Nasir Khan Durrani, Lahore CCPO Aslam Tareen, NAB Director (Rawalpindi) Naeem Baig, NAB Deputy Director Waqas, DIG (Operations) Punjab Sohail Ahmed Khan, DIG CTD Javed Islam, DIG (Legal) Ahsanullah Bajwa, DIG (Investigations) Chaudhry Shafique Gujjar, Lahore DIG (Operations) Tahir Rai, Islamabad SSP Tahir Alam Khan and CIA SP Omar Virk were also present.

The IG told NAB officers that the Punjab police would make every effort to arrest Touqeer Sadiq and provide all possible help to NAB authorities.

On the recommendations of NAB officials, the IG constituted a 20-member police team, headed by SP Malik Karamatullah Khokhar. The IG asked the Islamabad SSP to provide complete support to NAB authorities in the capital.

The NAB authorities were also asked to take up the issue of the arrest of the accused with the federal interior ministry to form a joint investigation team (JIT) comprising officers from the IB, MI and ISI.

The NAB was also recommended to freeze bank accounts and other properties of Touqueer Sadiq while those who helped the main accused in corruption or got benefit from him should also be interrogated.

Another meeting would be held during the next week to discuss progress in this regard.

The IG told reporters the Punjab police would not hesitate to raid any place, including the Governor’s House, to arrest the accused.

A participant confided to Dawn that NAB officials told the meeting there were reports that the accused remained hid in the Governor’s House for some time. He said investigators had detected transfer of around Rs3 billion from the multiple bank accounts of the accused to abroad.

He said according to NAB records, cash was also found transferred to the accounts of PPP senior leaders, some relatives of the accused and nine Ogra directors. The accused, who allegedly embezzled Rs84 million, had 43 bank accounts.

The official said there were reports that the suspect was hiding somewhere in Islamabad.

The IG has appointed SP Malik Karamatullah as head of a police team despite the fact that he had been made OSD two days ago in connection with the inquiry of a sodomy-cum-murder case.

Karamatullah was the then Hafizabad DPO and he was found guilty by the provincial home secretary of negligence for not resolving the case and penalising the accused.

The IG said the police team would be at the disposal of NAB in Punjab and the police would assist them because of a shortage of NAB staff.

He said SP Karamatullah had been given the assignment because of his experience.