Ahad Cheema on judicial remand until July 4, after 90-day physical custody
LAHORE: Accountability court on Tuesday directed former director-general Lahore Development Authority (LDA) Ahad Cheema and chief executive officer (CEO) of Bismillah Engineering Shahid Shafiq to jail on a legal remand in the Ashiana Housing Scheme case until July 4.
National Accountability Bureau (NAB) officials produced them before the court on Tuesday, under substantial security.
Accountability court judge Najamul Hasan was informed by NAB officials that Cheema was arrested on February 21 after declaration of his fraudulent involvement and misuse of authority in Ashiyana-e-Iqbal Housing scheme, including corruption worth billions in a deal between Paragon Housing Society and Punjab Land Development Company.
The NAB inquiry further revealed that Bismillah Engineering Services Co (a major shareholder of JV titled Lahore CASA Developers) was a proxy firm working on behalf of Paragon City (Pvt) Ltd. Cheema allegedly received illegal gratification in the form of 32 kanals of land (valuing Rs 30.09 million approximately from the owners of Paragon City (Pvt) Ltd.
According to NAB officials, “Due to the ineligibility of the companies which were in contract for the project of Ashiana Housing Scheme, the government had to bear a loss of over Rs64.5 million.”
After hearing the arguments of the NAB officials, the court sent Cheema and Shafiq to jail on judicial remands after their 90-day and 87-day physical remands ended.
At the time of arrest, Cheema- A grade-19 employee, was serving as the chief executive of Quaid-e-Azam Thermal Power Limited.
The sources in Punjab Civil Secretariat said that notification of Cheema’s arrest was issued after approval from the federal government.
According to sources, NAB officials also seized cash and a luxury car during the course of investigations of Ahad Cheema.
He is also found to be owning assets worth millions of rupees. Besides, a huge amount to the tune of $200,000 was also transacted into his brother’s bank account.