No Corruption during Saad Rafiq tenure in Railways: Audit Report
The Supreme Court was informed that an audit report on Pakistan Railways’ finances showed that there had been no corruption or irregularities in the department during former minister Saad Rafique’s tenure.
A three-member bench was hearing a suo motu case regarding the losses mopped up by Pakistan Railways allegedly during the tenure of Saad Rafique as minister, who yesterday submitted his reply to the audit report in the corruption case.
The former Railways minister was presented before the court as he is currently in National Accountability Bureau custody. His lawyer submitted the audit report sought by the court on Railways losses and told the bench that it didn’t turn up any corruption or irregularities. “But were there losses?” Justice Nisar inquired. “These are not losses but a deficit that has carried on for the past 65 years,” the lawyer responded.
Earlier, a member of Railways’ finance department had told the court that the department had suffered Rs163 billion losses during the PML-N government and generated a total revenue of Rs180 billion. Rafique also addressed the court saying, “I want to inform the court about something. During the tenure of the railways minister before me, the then government would give Rs58 million in the shape of pensions. In my tenure, the Railways department itself gave Rs21 million for the payment of pensions. Now I deserve applause from the top court.” However, the top judge said the applause would be give n after solution to the issue.
His counsel said, “These are not losses but a deficit that has carried on for the past 65 years.”
The court ordered the auditor general and federal government to furnish their replies to Rafique’s response. Talking to the media, the PML-N leader termed the punishment given Nawaz sharif injustice. Nor American locomotive is available at Rs220 million, nor it was bought for 440 million, he said.
He rejected Railways Minister Sheikh Rasheed’s claims on locomotor. He said that Rasheed made a false statement in the court. The railways minister had said that US locomotor cost Rs220million and Pakistan bought it for Rs440 million. Saad also said, “People (Sheikh Rasheed) should refrain from jealousy and envy”. To a question, he said that NAB’s treatment is fine but he has reservations over its law.