Pak Defence Ministry in Rs.23.5 billion swindling scam

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Islamabad, Feb 3 (ANI): The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the Pakistan National Assembly has exposed irregularities worth Rs.23.5 billion in the Defence Ministry in the wake of non-payment of a PTV license fee, payment for constructions of a Troops Family Welfare Centre at Mangla Garrison etc.

The PAC revealed that Pakistan Army personnel had not been paying the PTV license fee, Rs.25 per month in electricity bill, since the time of its implementation. It directed the authorities concerned to collect the PTV license fee from the Pakistan Army personnel right from January 01, 2009.

Leader of the Opposition Nisar Khan said that it was a waste of public money and the looted amount should be recovered, adding that Army personnel and civilians should follow rules and regulations for the dignity of the country.

There are 40 objections in the Audit Report 2005-06 and the PAC Chairman has sought reports on most of the paras within a month. An audit official told the meeting that Wapda was not recovering the PTV license fee, Rs 25 in the electricity bill from military, The Nation reported.

Defence Secretary Lt General (retired) Syed Athar Ali told the meeting that Pakistan Army personnel had not been paying PTV license fee, but now from January 01 onward they would pay the fee.

He said the previous dues should be written off. He further said that there was a 50 per cent discount in power tariff for Pakistan Army personnel.

Riaz Hussain Pirzada said that PTV license fee should be levied on military officers and not on soldiers.

The Chairman PAC said the proposals should be presented within a month to amend the law if it was needed. He was of the view that some elements in Pakistan Army were tarnishing its image.

Auditor General Rana Tanvir Ali Agha proposed to hold a separate meeting with Defence Ministry in that regard to take up this issue. He said that a total of Rs 1.3 million dues were payable under the head of PTV license fee from military and suggested to write it off. (ANI)

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