KARACHI - Some senior officials of Sindh Excise and Taxation Department (ETD) have hired their own private persons to mint money through illegitimate activities. Provincial Minister for (ETD) Mukesh Kumar Chawla confirmed that some officials were involved in such malpractices having their own private forces. According to the well-placed sources, a number of Excise and Taxation Officer (ETO) and Inspectors have hired private personnel to run their lucrative illegal rackets for the collection of extortion money from the drug dens and wine shops. The ETD officials use them to arrest the persons involved in such heinous crimes and, later on, release them after taking heavy amount as bribe. Source privy to the matter told The Nation that one of the personal teams of the ETD officer had earned Rs 1 million within few days through their unlawful operations. He cited a single case in which ETO of Division Intelligence Office (DIO) Amir Waheed, along with Inspectors Mushtaq Khokar and Waseem Khan, intercepted a vehicle at Khada Market, Hockey Stadium, Defense and seized four bags of illegal wine from Yaqoob, on November8. Sources said the officials were questioned over the arrest of Yaqoob because the accused enjoyed good relationship with a high ranking official of the said department. But the raiding team released him after pocketing Rs. 125,000. Earlier, the said team of ETD had arrested a wine dealer Imran on October 28 from II Chundrigar road carrying five containers of wine bottles; they took him to the police station where the accused pointed out another alleged den during the investigation on which, another raid was conducted at the related place. This building is owned by Mian Mohammad Pagganwala, while neither the building owner nor the premises of building was used in this case. Later, the DIO not only released Imran after receiving Rs 0.1 million but also returned the seized wine and vehicle to the accused. Similarly, Amir Waheed conducted another raid in an office located in Kadda market Defense area and arrested Shahbaz s/o Zain with his jeep and recovered eight crates of wine but released him after taking bribe of Rs.0.2 million.  Later on, the same team arrested Sikandar Baloch a title holder of Mr Pakistan in body building sports from Do Talwar Clifton area and recovered two crates of wine from his position but released him after receiving Rs 0.1 million.  The DIO Amir Waheed used to accompany Inspector Waseem Khan, constables, Munir Ahmed, Saleem Memon, Khan Mohammad and others. While talking to The Nation regarding the matter the Excise and Taxation Minister Mukesh Kumar Chawala said that such activities would not be tolerated. He further elaborated that no official would be allowed to recruit his personal staff on the name of fake law and order. He accepted that the department was facing shortage of staffers, but it did not mean that the officials hired their private men and paid them from their pockets. He maintained that he had come to know that some DIOs and Inspectors had their personal employees. He shared that direction had been given to the concerned officials to submit the report of the scrutiny within two weeks.