KARACHI: An accountability court was told on Tuesday that the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) had offered the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to set grievances of over 5,700 people allegedly held for cheating billions of rupees under the name of the Fazaia Housing Scheme.
Investigating officer Aslam Pervez Abro submitted a progress report on Tuesday in court pertaining to the alleged Rs13 billion Fazaia Housing Scheme case.
Two builders identified as Tanveer Ahmed and Bilal Tanveer have been arrested and currently held in custody for keeping the public from Rs13bn by investments in the scheme.
The suspects appeared before the administrative judge of the accountability courts, Judge Farid Anwar Qazi, and the IO sought extension for physical custody in order to further investigate.
The IO submitted a progress report by special prosecutor Shahbaz Sahotra claiming that further evidence had been collected during the investigation that both suspects were involved in cheating the general public with assistance from PAF officials.
He mentioned that the PAF had lodged an application with the federal anti-graft watchdog offering to help the arrested builders redress the grievances of the victims of the scam. Currently the application is with the prosecution department of the office for their legal vetting, IO Abro mentioned in the report.
The report added that the perpetrators had illegally invaded the metropolis on approximately 180 acres of government land reserved for the K-IV project.
The report also stated that the suspects had found approximately 36 more joint bank accounts, which were necessary to track the money trail. The prosecutor therefore demanded that the court extend the physical remand of the suspects being held in NAB custody.
The judge extended their remand until February 6 with the promise they would be provided with the progress report before the court on the next day.
In the last hearing, the IO claimed in a progress report that it had emerged during the inquiry that the PAF initiated this project in the name of rehabilitation of war veterans and martyrs’ families, but the record showed that of the 8,400 housing units intended, only 30 units were allocated to shuhada families, which negated the very aim of the housing scheme.
It added that it emerged during record scrutiny that the arrested builders in active collaboration with PAF officials were gathering Rs18,208,247,781 in different heads. The report said both the builders collected the enormous amount from 5,732 individuals, adding that the figure did not include the PAF personnel who were coaxed into buying housing units within their own department.
In the execution and launch of the project, the suspects openly defied the relevant laws and carried out their advertisement, selling, construction and booking without the Malir Construction Authority (MDA) approval of their layout plan and the Sindh Building Control Authority’s no-objection certificate, it said.