USC officials on FIA’s radar

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Investigative Agency (FIA) has started a probe against the Utility Store Corporation (USC) officials in millions of rupee scams.

Sources said that FIA Corporate crime circle Islamabad has served notice to applicants concerning ongoing inquiry no 122/2020.

Investigation officer Wajahat Ali Sultan is investigating the above-mentioned case.

Sources said that the applicant Shahab-ud-din has informed the IO that the officials of USC allegedly involved in black marketing of wheat, sugar and ghee.

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Explaining the matter, the applicant stated that he also gave an application in February 2020 to the former MD Umar Lodhi concerning alleged corruption in pulses purchasing however nothing has been done so far.

He claimed that USC received Rs151 per kg rate of pulses through tender; however, the management cancelled it due to the higher rate.

On the other hand, the management passed another pulses tender with the rate Rs169 on December 31, 2019, despite the fact, the rate of pulses in the open market, as well as ‘Akbari Mandi’, were between Rs102 to Rs120.

Eventually, the department had to lower down the rate of pulses from Rs160 to Rs130 per kg when they failed to sell pulses in stores.

Similarly, he also claimed that the high ups of USC minted money in rice as well as ghee purchasing. 

He claimed that Tender Committee Chairman Sardar Muhammad Khan in connivance with high ups purchased the low-quality rice from Nadeem rice mill Islamabad and then supplied these in the packing of ‘utility basmati rice’ to stores. 

He has also given the samples as proof of such packing to inquiry officer Muhammad Hasan Farooq.

Moreover, he alleged that USC management has caused Rs700 million losses to the government exchequer.

The “Manpasand” ghee of Dalda Foods Ltd and “Handi” ghee of Habib oil mill was available at Rs165 per kg in the market while the cost price of low-quality ghee such as Hayat ghee, Barkat and Khusbo were around Rs153 per kg. 

He alleged that the USC administration took a commission from ghee mill owners and equaled the cost price of low-quality ghee brands with the “Manpasand “ and ”Handi “.

He also stated that the government arranged 4 million tonnes of wheat at the rate of Rs1375 per ton from Pakistan Agricultural Storage & Services Corporation Ltd (PASSCO) to facilitate the masses.

USC used to buy 100kg of the floor on 100kg wheat whereas the department made a pact with floor mills about 80kg floor on 100kg wheat and gave the benefit to mills, he claimed.

Sources claimed that FIA is using delaying tactics in this inquiry, as they are not directing the department to furnish records.

FIA Director Waqar Ahmad Chohan said that an enquiry against the USC officials is being conducted.


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