Pervaiz Elahi’s close aide arrested

ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Sunday arrested former Punjab chief minister Chaudhary Pervaiz Elahi’s principal secretary Muhammad Khan Bhatti from Gujranwala on charges of receiving bribes/ kickbacks.

According to NAB sources, Bhatti allegedly influenced his position and he, in connivance with Pervaiz Elahi and other accused persons, appointed their confidant Mahr Azmat Hayat as XEN of Punjab Highways Department, Gujrat Division and then promoted him to the post of superintending engineer (SE) Gujrat circle.

The sources further claimed that Elahi in connivance with Bhatti and others, by disregarding rules, approved 116x Road development schemes under supplementary grants with the ulterior motives of receiving bribes/ kickbacks.

The NAB sources further alleged that Pervaiz Elahi, Moonis Elahi and Muhammad Khan Bhatti were awarded contracts for road development works to their nominated contractors through Mahr Azmat Hayat, SE Gujarat.

The accused issued payments to contractors without work done at the site for the purpose of collecting bribes/ kickbacks from contractors. The amounts of bribes/ kickbacks were collected by Pervaiz Elahi, Moonis Elahi and Bhatti through Mahr Azmat Hayat and Sohail Asghar Awan (personal secretary of Moonis Elahi).

According to the sources, the NAB team interrogated Bhatti in Central Jail Lahore with “the permission of the court”.

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