Ashiana Housing Scam: Fawad Hassan Fawad ends up arrested by NAB

Fawad Hassan Fawad

INP reports, senior bureaucrat and the principal secretary of the former PM Nawaz Sharif, Fawad Hassan Fawad was arrested by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Thursday. Considered among the closest people to the former premier, Fawad Hassan Fawad’s arrest is related to the Ashiana Iqbal Housing Scheme case.

The reports suggest that one of the top civil servants Fawad is accused of causing huge financial losses to the national exchequer i.e. billions of rupees. His arrest was carried out after he was called by the NAB authorities for questioning and although the officials didn’t confirm the arrest initially, later the news was made official; that Fawad Hassan Fawad is under the custody.

Fawad is believed to have deliberately skipped several previous summons and thus avoided queries in the ongoing housing scheme scam investigations. However, when he was again summoned for questioning by the bureau today, the authorities finally held him.

Serving as the principal secretary to Nawaz Sharif, Fawad was removed from the post on June 1 this year but was immediately appointed as Director General Civil Services Academy, Lahore. The NAB authorities wanted him over the allegations of his role in awarding the contract for Punjab Government’s Ashiana-e-Iqbal Housing Scheme, illegally. Other reasons to probe this high-profile civil servant include the following:

– Possession of assets, beyond declared or known source(s) of income, and
– Allegedly awarding CNG Contracts, illegally

NAB authorities wanted to know whether how and why the contract for the said housing scheme was awarded to a ‘Proxy Group’ namely “Lahore Casa Developers” whereas the reality is; it was won by Chaudhry Latif and Sons, a private construction company.

According to NAB, the then Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif used his influence to award the contract to LCD, with the help of his aides.

Lahore Casa Developers meanwhile, is believed to be a proxy group of the well-known Paragon City (Pvt.) Limited; owned by Saad Rafique, the former Minister for Railways.

Fawad is levelled charges of unlawful activities against the contract-winning-firm Chaudhry Latif and Sons. NAB believes he did so in order to oblige Casa Developers by awarding the contract to them, using his powers as the then implementation secretary to the Punjab’s CM.

Shehbaz Sharif was also summoned by the NAB in this very case while Ahad Cheema, the former Chairman Lahore Development Authority is already on judicial remand; following his arrest in the case.

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