The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has decided to investigate the Rs 17 billion Defence Housing Authority (DHA) City Lahore scam with a holistic approach after some fresh evidence surfaced in the scam.
A source in the NAB told Pakistan Today that since the matter was at the inquiry stage, being subjudice, NAB has decided to investigate the case thoroughly and submit all the evidence before the court.
“We will follow the direction of the court once we share our detailed investigation report with the court. We are investigating why DHA officials transferred full payment of Rs 17 billion to the accused while the required land had not been handed over to the DHA,” the source said.
The source added that it was astonishing to note that the DHA in its recent advertisement had admitted that the land had been transferred to it in “bits and pieces”.
“This admission itself is evidence about the fact that the required land had already been handed over to the DHA City management. Moreover, the project was launched in year 2009, why did DHA officials observe such a mysterious silence for so long over the failure of both the companies in handing over the land to them. Why they did not terminate the contract?” the source observed.
The source said that the then higher ups of DHA also transferred full payment to the accounts of both the parties involved.
“We are investigating the matter with an open mind without being judgmental,” the source added.
When asked whether NAB had summoned Kamran Kayani, the source said that NAB had sought a statement from Kamran Kayani in 2014, but he did not turn up to record it.
He also said that NAB was considering the request of the prime accused Hammad Arshad to become an approver, and added that he had offered his readiness to settle the case.
“Hammad has made two offers to the DHA. He is ready to return full payment if DHA hands him back the land. If DHA is happy with the land, then they should withdraw the case. However, any decision needs to be taken by the court now as the matter is with the court,” the source added.
The source said that it was DHA, which had nominated Kamran Kayani as an accused in the case.
The DHA City project was launched in 2009 primarily to accommodate and facilitate the families of “shuhada” (martyrs), war wounded, and soldiers of the Pakistan armed forces, by allotting them small sized plots in recognition of their services to the country.
Reportedly, Kamran Kayani of Elysium Holding and Hamaad Arshad of Globaco offered their services to facilitate DHA Lahore to carry out the project by acquiring land. However, both the companies failed to deliver any plots to soldiers or the families of the shuhada even after six years. This prompted DHA to lodge a formal complaint against Kamran Kayani and Hamaad Arshad with NAB.
Arshad, who is the CEO of Al-Hamra Hills and Al-Hamra Avenue, had also submitted a Voluntary Return (VR) with NAB in the DHA Islamabad scam. He was also investigated by NAB for obtaining Rs 1.25 billion from members of the Shaheen Foundation on the pretext of giving them residential and commercial plots.
DHA Islamabad had also lodged a formal complaint with NAB Islamabad/Rawalpindi against Hamaad Arshad regarding the DHA Farmhouse Scam.