CPEC Project Payment Case ;Court Rejects NHA’s Plea to Suspend Warrants of Chairman-Team Shifts Responsibility to NLC

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Tazeen Akhtar

The court of Senior Civil Judge  Dera Ismael Khan KPK has rejected NHA’s plea to suspend the  non bailable warrants for National Highway Authority ,Captain R Sikander Qayyum who failed to comply with the orders of court and sent his legal team to defend him on 28 July 2020.

The court fixed 30 Aug 2020 for further hearing.

Government contractors Talib Hussain and Ghulam Mohammad had filed a case in this court in March 2019 that they constructed a road in Rehmani Khel, Pahar Pur area under the project of CPEC. NHA and NLC fixed rates and later on altered them without our notice and discussion. Thus cutting a huge amount from the bill that surmounts to 529 Million Rupees.It was project of CPEC. The two departments altered the terms and conditions later without sharing any information or notice to the contractors.

Earlier the court issued the warrants of heads of both departments in mid of July 2020.  Chairman NHA Captain R Sikander Qayyum was summoned two times in this case and was directed not to release any amount to anyone till the orders of the court but the Chairman neither appeared before the court nor obeyed the court orders and cleared an amount of 430 Million PKR to what the close sources of the contractors say “Someone”.

 Director General NLC Major General Yousuf Jamaal along with other officials were also summoned by the court  but  failed to comply with the orders.The court issued non bailable arrest warrants of DG NLC as well but neither DG nor any official on his behalf appeared on 28 July 2020 .

On 28 July 2020, the legal team of NHA tried to shift the responsibility to NLC wholly solely because this project was awarded by NLC and not by NHA. While the contractors say that NHA was the main supervisor of this project. NHA team could not elaborate its stance because if NHA was not responsible, the question arises why it paid the amount of 430 Million to another party?

As long as NLC is concerned the sources close to the contractors claim that NLC asked for arbitration with the contractors in this matter last year. The court sought the name of the arbitrator and the contractors suggested the name of Gen ( R ) Shahid Niaz ( Former Engineer in Chief /ex  DG FWO / ex CPEC head. NLC preferred Quarter Master General. Later the QMG recorded the statements of both sides and decided in favor of the contractors but NLC still did not clear the bills.

 

 

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