SC hears Rs 50bn land scam case today

ISLAMABAD:The Supreme Court will hear the Rs 50 billion Royal Palm Golf and Country Club land scam case today (Monday).The court had, on January 13 admitted for regular hearing the petition jointly filed by former minister of state for railways Ishaq Khan Khakwani and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) founding member Dr Mobashir Hassan.The petitioners alleged that 141 acres of land had been leased out to the Hussain Construction Company during the government of General (r) Pervez Musharraf in a non-transparent manner and flagrant violation of the settled principles, causing a loss of Rs 50 billion to the national exchequer.The court had asked the company, which operates the club in the heart of Lahore, to submit a report disclosing the names of the investors, sponsors and shareholders of the project.The railways board had been asked to submit the records of transaction between the railways and the lessee, and particulars of the officers involved.“Prima facie we are of the opinion that a number of questions of public importance as well as fundamental rights in terms of property, security and national interests are involved,” the bench had observed in the last hearing.Lieutenant General (r) Javed Ashraf Qazi was directed to submit a suitable reply to the allegations levelled by the petitioner against him.He was the railways minister when the deal took place. Former railways chairman Lieutenant Colonel (r) Saeeduz Zafar and senior officers Major General (r) Hamid Hassan Butt and Khurshid Alam were also asked to submit their replies. “Their absence in the court will deem to be considered as if they have nothing to rebut the allegations – Dailytimes