NAB gurus out to hush up multi-billion financial scam

* Repeated transfers of investigation officers and appointment of ‘incompetent’ officials to investigate the scandal has raised many an eyebrow
AFP

ISLAMABAD: In an apparent bid to save the skin of the Modarba and Musharka scammers instead of laying tough hands on them, the high-ups at the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) are trying to hush up the matter by merely filing a reference against the accused, it has been learnt.
“A total of 17 different Modarba companies were busy in looting and plundering the public in the name of Islamic investment and they have minted more than Rs 31 billion, and promised the investors 8 percent monthly profit,” highly placed sources told Daily Times. The way the investigators of this scandal have repeatedly been transferred from the case and allegedly incompetent officials have been assigned the probe, raises eyebrows. In one such instance, a radar official at the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has been made part of the Modarba and Musharka scandal. The said official, it has been learnt, has instructed the investigation team not to issue any arrest warrant in this case and to pursue the case by means of filing references in the courts.
Out of the claims of Rs 31 billion, only Rs 446 million have been recovered, insiders have said. Source said although NAB has asked the Interior Ministry to put the names of the accused on the ECL but the way the probe is being carried out is primarily flawed and one cannot expect justice would be done and the grievances of the victims would be redressed. The documents available with this correspondent suggest that among these Modarba companies, M/s Fayyazi Industries of Mufti Ehsanul Haq, Elixer Group of Asif Javed and Mezban Store of Ghulam Rasool Ayoubi were the three major companies which illegally collected billions of rupees, while the claims received by NAB against these three companies were 75 percent.
Similarly, Alwassay Group of Mufti Shabir Usmani, Islamic Traders Pvt of Moulana Abdullah, Bilal Trading Corporation (BTC) of Muhammad Bilal, M/s Global Concerns of Mateehur Rehman, Al-Baraka, Al-Jazeera International, Abbac International and Islamic Investment of Muhammad Nazir were included in the list of those who plundered millions from the public, reveals the documentary evidence. In the same way, the documents show that NAB was investigating The Mass Traders, Pearl Shine Private Limited and some individuals involved in the scam, including Muhammad Ihsan, Bilal Khan Bungash and Abdullah. 
According to reports, the embezzled amount in the Modarba scandal was initially estimated over or around Rs 550 million but the NAB officials were shocked to see that this mega scam was bigger and beyond their estimations. “A scam of this kind of magnitude was never imagined. It’s a classic case of boundless lust for money at the cost of public’s innocence,” a top NAB official told this reported in a detailed interaction.
It was only after this scandal was dug deep that the federal watchdog learnt and subsequently received more than forty thousand claims amounting to billions of rupees, the NAB boss said. The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), the documents show, had informed NAB that Modarba companies were involved in the illegal business as none of them was registered with the government and their accounts were not verified by any certified auditor. 
The people affected by the scam were mostly students of seminaries (madrassas), their families, widows and retired government employees belonging to almost every walk of life. “They were cunningly cheated by some religious scholars, muftis and prayer leaders who worked as agents of the Modarba companies and collected billions from the public throughout Pakistan,” the NAB guru added. 

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