ISLAMABAD, May 17 (APP):Minister of State for Petroleum Dr Musadik Malik Wednesday said Imran Khan as prime minister had deprived the nation of $250 million or one-fourth of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) package by diverting £190 million to Malik Riaz’s accounts instead of the national exchequer.
Addressing a press conference, he said under the United Kingdom’s laws, the £190 million returned by the National Crime Agency (NCA) should have gone to the national exchequer, but the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman (the then PM)diverted that amount to the accounts of a business tycoon.
Contrary to Imran Khan’s claims of establishing a “Riyasat-e-Madina” – a welfare state based on Islamic principles, Dr Musadik said the PTI chief rather took care of his own vested interests and indulged in obtaining financial and other kinds of benefits illegally.
He said today both Imran Khan and his wife were posing themselves as “innocent victims” but it were they who had “orchestrated a scheme of corruption to defraud the national exchequer of millions of dollars, equivalent to 25 percent of the package we are now seeking from the IMF”.
Imran Khan claimed that the money was deposited into the Supreme Court’s account, but, in fact, the funds had gone to Malik Riaz’s coffers, he added.
He said the related actions involving property were questionable. “Whether it would be acceptable that as a public servant, if I were to allocate a large area of land in my name and claim it belongs to a trust owned by me and my wife?”
It was ironic that despite clear proofs of his involvement in the $250 million corruption scandal, Imran Khan not only got bail in the instant case but was also granted protective bails for potential future crimes, he added.
The way the state’s writ was compromised with not adhering to the law and the Constitution, he said, would have consequences not only for the state but also for those who were “endorsing and legitimizing the illegal acts”.
“The fire will engulf your house too,” he added.
Drawing parallels to the “doctrine of necessity” in the Molvi Mushtaq, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif cases, Dr Musadik questioned whether similar doctrines were at play in the cases involving Imran Khan, who was granted unconditional bails and side by side, “the Constitution was also rewritten for him”.
There was no precedent of such verdicts in the world, which would potentially result in further chaos, involving massive damage to public and private property, he warned.
Referring to the historical contexts of Justice Munir, Bhutto, and Nawaz cases, Dr Musadik stressed that those decisions should no more be followed as the country could not afford any adverse consequences. There should be fair trials of the PTI chief and “his accomplices” for their large-scale corruption and for the May 9 incidents, he added.
If those involved in the rioting and arsons were let go unpunished then it would set a precedent for violent groups to continue wreaking havoc all across the country, the minister remarked.
He cautioned the “supporters of Imran Khan in the judiciary that they are being closely watched and they will be equally held responsible for the destruction”.
Regarding oil prices, he explained that the public had to bear the burden because of surge in the dollar exchange rate vis-a-vis prices of the commodity in the international market. However, the government tried its best to give maximum relief to the public on that count.
Responding to a query, Dr Musadik clarified that no new gas connection schemes had been launched due to depleting gas reservoirs. He mentioned ongoing efforts to sign international agreements to secure gas supplies.
He contradicted the PTI’s claims, saying that no agreement was signed by its government with Russia for importing oil at cheaper rates. However, an accord was inked within the few months of the present Pakistan Democratic Movement government, and discounted oil shipments from Russia would soon reach the country.
Dr Musadik recalled that the government had already approved a $10-14 billion oil refinery project. Pakistan was going to launch a comprehensive energy security plan in collaboration with a friendly country soon, which would help overcome the energy crisis, he added.
Regarding the petrol relief package, he assured that it would be launched after consulting with the stakeholders.