Owner of private varsity arrested in land scam

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The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Ehtesab Commission (KPEC) on Friday arrested the owner of a private university on the charge of purchasing prime government land in the upscale Hayatabad Township at throwaway price.

The suspect, Iqra National University (INU) Peshawar owner and chancellor Obaidur Rehman, was produced before Ehtesab judge Hayat Ali Shah, who remanded him into the custody of the commission for 13 days.

The judge ordered the suspect`s production on June 10.

Additional deputy prosecutor general of the commission Barrister Qazi Babar Irshad told the court that some government officials had allotted government land measuring 20 kanals in Phase 2 of Hayatabad Township to the suspect at much cheaper rate than the market price few years ago.

He said the suspect was given the land at the rate of Rs700,000 per kanal though its market value was around Rs8 million per kanal at that time.

Babar alleged that the suspect had indicted a loss of around Rs150 million to the exchequer. He said some government functionaries were also involved in the land scam as they had collaborated with him.

The additional deputy prosecutor general said the custody of the suspect was required to the commission to interrogate him and trace his accomplices.

An official of the commission confided to Dawn that a provincial government secretary was involved in the case as he overruled objections to the said deal by certain officials and approved the relevant summary. On the land, the suspect built the INU building.

At the time of allotment of the land, the Peshawar Development Authority had claimed that the land was reclaimed from a watercourse due to which its rate was lower than market price.

EX-MINISTER REMANDED: A local Ehtesab court on Friday remanded former provincial minister and PPP leader Liaquat Shabab into the custody of Ehtesab commission for 13 days in an illegal asset case. The suspect, who was arrested a day earlier on the charge of possessing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income, was produced before Ehtesab judge Subhan Sher Khan.

Additional deputy prosecutor general of the commission Barrister Babar Irshad told the court that the suspect was the excise and taxation minister during the last provincial government and that he possessed valuable movable and immovable properties.

Credits : Dawn.com