KHANEWAL

A district officer allegedly appointed his blue-eyed and non-qualified persons as chairmen of 46 union councils in Kabirwala Tehsil, and with the alleged connivance of his subordinates has been embezzling the government funds.

In the dirty game, clerk Azhar Bakhshi at the office of District Officer Community Development (DOCD) Mirza Raees Ahmad is working as spinal-cord as all the funds embezzlements and kickbacks are managed by former.

In a complaint, Sajjad Shah, a resident of Kabirwala, had demanded that Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif should order probe into the matter and refer the case to Anti-Corruption Establishment for further investigation and registration of an FIR.

Sajjad said that Kabirwala Tehsil of Khanewal district is bifurcated in 46 union councils including the urban area. According to the policy notification of the government, the persons having minimum qualification of intermediate or equivalent are eligible for the post of union council secretary. However, the DOCD has posted persons with middle, matric as secretaries of union councils in the presence of senior and qualified employees, he said.

All the ineligible UC secretaries were illegally posted to manage and enhance the network of corruption and looting union council development funds, he said. UC Secretary Tahir Iqbal has been enjoying the post for more than five year despite hundreds of public complaints. He is involved in malpractices and tampering of official record, he said. In the presence of qualified staff, he is holding the charge of three union councils of Hashmat Mirali, Jodhpur and Mari Sahu.

“A show cause notice was issued to UC secretary Hussain Abad Awal and Sadiq Bandesha by the DOCD due to funds embezzlement. His cash book is proof of his corruption but he never replied the show cause notices nor provided the cash book to the inquiry officer for perusal. When he settled matters with DOCD and TMO Kabirwala all the notices were turned down with justification and disciplinary action,” he said.

Similarly on public complaints, charges of fund embezzlement of Rs8.8 million was established against UC secretary Altaf Taragar of union council Salar Wahin and Mumdal, but due to collaboration with his higher officers his corruption inquiry file and report were dumped into cold storage, he added.

In union council 38/1 Kabirwala, peon Zafar is working as UC secretary. On public complaints, FIR 150/12 was registered against Zafar with Anti-Corruption police. After the FIR, competent authority marked inquiry against Zafar and DOCO was appointed as inquiry officer. But DOCO Mirza Raees as usual accommodated the member of his corrupt team, no report was submitted and the matter is still lying pending.

Muhammad Mumtaz and Mushtaq Gujjar, peons, are enjoying the offices of UC secretaries in union councils Haveli Korangana and Darkhana respectively and looting government funds with both hands. On complaints, they were removed from these seats but all the charges of corruption and inquiries are yet pending with TMO Imtiaz Joyia and Mirza Raees as they are not interested to unveil the truth.

Residents of Chak Haiderabad lodged a lot of complaints of corruption and fund misappropriation against UC secretary Nasir, but no action could be taken by the Khanewal DOCO. Then a complainant was filed with Anti-Corruption Department and FIR 35/15 was registered against him on 21-10-2015. However, no departmental action has so far been taken nor removed from the seat.

The identical case is of Moonganwala UC secretary Khizar Mugsi while clerk Azhar Bakhshi is backed by corrupt officials. They are living luxurious life without any fear of accountability or punishment. People and complainants of the area have demanded that the Punjab chief minister should take serious notice of the issue and make arrangement of the recovery of millions of rupees.

When contacted, DOCO Mirza Raees and TMO Imtiaz Joyia denied the allegations and refused to give their detailed versions on the issue.