ISLAMABAD- National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has decided to conduct investigations against Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) for allegedly causing loss of approximately Rs one billion to national kitty for making faulty design of new Islamabad Airport.

According to the NAB authorities, the Bureau has noted that both of the airstrips of new Islamabad Airport did not meet the international standards to be used for simultaneous operations.

A NAB spokesman said CAA’s in-competency and negligence caused loss of more than Rs one billion and precious time of 10 years, as airport does not meet the international standards for use of both airstrips for simultaneous operations.

“The inter-strip distance is only 300 Ms instead of 800 Ms, inspite of availability of space and land,” the spokesman further said through an official handout.

NAB spokesman said that Chairman NAB took serious notice of criminal negligence and directed Operations Divisions to conduct inquiry into the matter.

Chairman NAB during a briefing given by DG CAA under the Prevention Regime Initiative has also appreciated the efforts of CAA’s present set up for conducting the detailed study and revisiting the charges from international flights operating for all facilities through Pakistan’s airspace and also ground facilities extended to various domestic and international carriers.

Earlier, NAB had initiated inquiry about the auditing and billing system of CAA pertaining to these charges in March 2012. The CAA has been losing approximately Rs 10-14 billion per year since last two decades, as its charges had never been revised since 1992. Additionally, there was no transparent system of accounting and verification of these charges.

According to NAB, now CAA has increased its revenues from Rs 13 billion to Rs 27 billion per annum. In another issue undertaken during the briefing as regards to allowing the towers and high-rise buildings in Islamabad, NAB observed that incompetency, negligence and faulty procedures in planning mechanism of CDA has given loss of approximately Rs 500 million to one of the builders in Islamabad as the CDA planners failed to coordinate with CAA in calculating the permissible safety height. NAB took serious view and has now issued instructions to all its regions to ask town planners to obtain advance clearance from CAA.

NAB also asked CAA to further improve its procedures with intensive IT facilities for quicker and accurate response to its clientage, as also in the case of audit of their accounts.

In another prevention action, NAB has directed all its Bureaus to interact with Irrigation Departments of respective provinces to take appropriate measures in ensuring silt dealing operations so as tail end users would get their due share of waters. Forest Departments have also been instructed to ensure marking of trees along the roads and canals and prepare survey and record keeping.

Chairman NAB had held a Press briefing few days ago pertaining to the Prevention Regime efforts and NAB authorities say the aforesaid actions are in continuation of the same regime.