Alleged corruption in land sale: SC puts Tappi, others on notice

KARACHI: The Supreme Court SC on Thursday put Owais Muzaffar Tappi, the step brother of President Asif Ali Zardari, senior member of Board of Revenue BOR Sind, and others on notice in an application seeking action against them for alleged massive corruption in sale of government land.

A larger bench of the Supreme Court headed by Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali was seized with Karachi law and order suo moto implementation case at its Karachi registry. The bench also comprised Justice Khilji Arif Hussain, Sarmad Jalal Usmani, Gulzar Ahmed and Athar Saeed.

Syed Mehmood Akhtar Naqvi, a civil rights campaigner, filed an application seeking action against serious illegal practices in BOR. He submitted before the court that Owais Muzaffar Tappi rules the BOR and police department.

He alleged that Tappi with his co-conspirators, senior member of BOR, Shahzar Shamoon and section officer Muhammad Ali Shaikh illegally allotted the lands and converted the 33year lease into 99year. He said that many lands were regularized without submitting challans in the national exchequer, causing loss to the national exchequer.

He stated that Tappi, Shahzar Shamon, section officers Muhammad Ali Shaikh, Yar Muhammad Bozdar and Aftab Pathan, were responsible for causing huge losses to the national exchequer as they were allotting high category government land at throwaway prices by showing it low category land.

Justice Usmani asked that everyone is saying ‘Tappi, Tappi’, who is Tappi He said that if Tappi is responsible for the irregularities in the BOR then why FIR is not registered against him. The court asked member BOR whether he knew Tappi or not. In response, he replied that he doesn’t know Tappi but he has heard through media.

The court issued notice to Tappi and others to file comments regarding allegations levelled against them.

Earlier, the court came down hard on the senior member of revenue, saying that it had imposed ban on allotment and mutation of government land across the province not on the transfer of the private property. The court said complains are being received that BOR has restricted the private property mutation.

Yawer Farooqi appearing on behalf of BOR submitted that court has ordered complete ban on mutation of property in the province. Justice Jamali cleared that we had imposed ban on transfer of government land only.

Justice Khilji inquired from the member of BOR as to how much land has been allotted to the blue eyed persons on 99year lease. Upon which, Farooqi said that 70900 acres have been allotted on 99year lease without auction. He told the court most of the land has been allotted for the industrial projects. Justice Khilji remarked that if BOR had allotted land in such quantity for industrial projects, there would be no any jobless person in the province.

Farooqi told the court that land on 33 years lease is allotted without auction and allotments on 99 years lease are through procedure and the chief minister has power to make allotment in special cases only.

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