Zulfi Bukhari, Ghulam Sarwar are ‘cleared’ from Pindi Ring Road Scandal

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Former SAPM Zulfi Bukhari and Minister for Aviation Ghulam Sarwar Khan are apparently clear in the investigation

LAHORE: Former SAPM Zulfi Bukhari and Minister for Aviation Ghulam Sarwar Khan have allegedly received a clean chit in the inquiry. This was announced by Anti-Corruption Punjab Director General Gohar Nafees at a press conference Wednesday on the conclusion of the investigation report into the Pindi Ring Road irregularities case. The initial report has been given to Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Former commissioner Rawalpindi and project director Rawalpindi Ring Road project, Muhammad Mahmood, and land acquisition collector Abbas Tabish have been detained and a case has been registered in connection with the breaches in Rawalpindi Ring Road.

“Mehmood and Tabish are already behind bars,” Punjab ACE DG Gohar Nafees said at a news conference. “The findings of the ACE are based on an inquiry team analyzing 21,000 documents and interrogating 100 officers,” the official added.

“It is for the first time in the history that the Punjab ACE has arrested an officer of the rank of commissioner,” he said.

The ACE asserted that the accused persons had made the decision of “illegal alignment, compensations, awards, etc” without the approval of any higher authorities.

Sharing the aspects of the investigation with the media, he said former commissioner Rawalpindi Muhammad Mahmood changed the arrangement of the Ring Road which was approved by the then government in 2018, which raised the cost of the scheme and also the price of land.

A new firm was hired for consultancy and designated the job of new alignment without taking permission from the government. He said the project manager was asked to get consent from the chief minister but he failed to do that. He said the project was later delivered over to Nespak.

Gohar Nafees said in breach of rules, the local carrier was allowed to use the road which benefited the owners of the housing societies. He said CDA disallowed the development of the section which is in Islamabad, but this part was shown in the advertisements.

He said later the government decided to upgrade Lahore Ring Road Authority as Punjab Ring Road Authority to complete the construction and until then, no land would be acquired, but this was also violated by purchasing land worth Rs2.6 billion.

Twitter was flooded with the hashtag #CongratsZulfiqarBukhari after the reports were first seen on tv.

Zulfiqar Bukhari took to Twitter and said “Alhamdolillah truth prevails! I want to thank family, friends, and everyone who had faith in my fight for truth & justice, for their constant support over the past few weeks. Especially all the youth & #OverseasPakistanis who never stopped sending in wishes.”

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