KARACHI: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has initiated an investigation into more than 650 illegal appointments made in the Sindh Industrial Trading Estate (SITE) Limited during the tenure of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM).
According to sources, the then MQM minister for commerce and industries Rauf Siddiqui had made illegal appointments on political grounds, causing extra burden on the authority.
The actual strength of the SITE Ltd before 2007 stood at 245 which has now increased to over 1,500 employees.
The sources disclosed that with the appointment of such a large number of people in the SITE Ltd, the then minister had also given them rapid out-of-turn promotions. Interestingly, these promotions were revoked by Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) minister Ayaz Soomro (late).
Terming the 650 “out-of-turn” promotions made by Rauf Siddiqui in SITE as illegal, Soomro had cancelled them; however, when the industries and commerce portfolio was handed over to the MQM minister again, he cancelled the PPP minister’s order.
Sources said the promotions were made in violation of the Rules of Business of the Sindh government as no legal formalities were met in the promotion process. They said the PPP minister had taken action after Industries and Commerce Secretary Zameer Ahmed Khan briefed the minister about the illegal promotions.
In this regard, NAB’s Additional Director (Staff) Muhammad Amir Butt has forwarded a letter to Secretary Industries and Commerce asking for provision of credentials of all the appointments made since 2007 to 2010 in the SITE Ltd on the prescribed proforma.
“NAB Karachi has received a complaint regarding alleged illegal appointments done in department of Sindh Industrial Trading Estate SITE Ltd. Aforementioned in view, it is requested to furnish comprehensive report regarding recruitments done for a period of (2007-2010) BPS 16 and above covering aspects as per following format,” according to an official letter.
“The above information is required under section 27 of National Accountability Ordinance 1999 and may be provided via focal person to in-charge, complaint verification cell, PRCS building, NAB Karachi on April 19, 2019 at 11am please”, the letter added.