Compromised probing agencies destroying investment climate, national reputation. Action against elements behind the false LNG scandal demanded. People involved in wheat scam deserve no leniency

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(May-03-2024)

The Chairman of National Business Group Pakistan, President of Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, and All Karachi Industrial Alliance, and former provincial minister Mian Zahid Hussain, said on Friday that misuse of investigating agencies has become a big problem for the country’s fragile investment climate and reputation.

The illegal activities of probing agencies are sending a very negative message; therefore, he said a mechanism should be made to block the way of political cases.

According to Mian Zahid Hussain, if the government can investigate the wheat scandal, it can also examine and punish the perpetrators of the LNG scandal.

Speaking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that dozens of dignitaries were imprisoned, harassed their families, conducted media trials, and wasted billions of rupees to appease a politician.

He said that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had ordered an investigation into the wheat scandal, which was the right decision. The caretaker government allowed the import of wheat in unnecessary quantities, exempted taxes, ignored the opposition of the Minister of Commerce and Trading Corporation, and did not monitor imports.

Due to the attitude of the caretaker government, the importers filled their pockets by importing more than the prescribed amount of wheat, causing considerable losses to the country.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that the action of caretakers cost the nation more than one billion dollars and jeopardized the future of millions of farmers, who are now protesting nationwide.

He noted that instead of giving justice to farmers, they are being beaten, and arrests are being made. The hoarders buy vast amounts of wheat from farmers at throwaway prices, which does not meet their costs.

He warned that farmers could not buy seeds and fertilizers for the next crop, which may affect the production of various essential crops next year.

Mian Zahid Hussain said that an investigation of the LNG scandal is also necessary apart from the wheat scandal. The public has a right to know the cost of this bogus scandal to gratify a failed politician’s ego.

The injustice done to those who support the fake claims of a political cabal should be remedied. Former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, former Finance Minister Miftah Ismail, former PSO MDs Sheikh Imranul Haq and Shahid Islam, former Port Qasim Authority Chairman Agha Jan Akhtar, former OGRA Chairman Saeed Ahmad Khan, former OGRA Chairperson Uzma Adil Khan, former member Asim Naseem, investor Hussain Dawood, and his son Samad Dawood are among the victims of the LNG scandal.

Retaliatory politics also targeted Ahsan Iqbal, Ahad Cheema, and Fawad Hasan. Many of the accused were kept in jail for months before formal charges, and many bureaucrats were forced to support the false accusations and subjected to severe torture if they refused.

He demanded the creation of a mechanism to prevent the political use of investigative institutions in the future.

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