Punjab

CJP summons record of Ahad Cheema’s arrest, perks

Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar summoned on Saturday the complete record regarding the arrest and perks and privileges of senior Punjab bureaucrat Ahad Cheema.
Cheema was arrested by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on February 21 in the Ashiana Housing Scheme probe, after which the Punjab bureaucracy went up in arms in solidarity.
Hearing a suo motu notice on various public welfare issues, the chief justice, heading a three-member bench, observed that no bureaucrat shall boycott offices in protest, adding that in return NAB should also not harass anyone.
However, the chief justice remarked that persons summoned by NAB should appear before the anti-corruption watchdog.
“Whoever wants to resign should go home,” the chief justice remarked in relation to the protesting bureaucrats.
Moreover, the chief justice questioned how a resolution was passed against Cheema’s arrest by the Punjab Assembly, observing that tomorrow a resolution could also be passed against the Supreme Court’s summoning of anyone.
The Punjab Assembly, on Feb 28, had passed a resolution against NAB’s action against Cheema, terming it a violation of basic human rights.
During the hearing, the chief justice asked the Punjab chief secretary and Lahore Development Authority (LDA) director general about Cheema’s whereabouts and current posting, to which it was stated that Cheema presently heads the Quaid-e-Azam Power Plant.
Cheema’s arrest took place after NAB had detected illegalities and corruption worth billions in a deal between Paragon Housing Society and Punjab Land Development Company to construct the Ashiana Housing Scheme, a low-cost housing project of the Punjab government.
Cheema was heading the LDA at the time.
Moreover, during today’s hearing, the apex court also summoned the record of Paragon City housing society, while hearing the suo motu notice of the LDA City case.