Returned written-off to go in dams fund: CJP

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ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP) on Tuesday issued directives to deposit returns from the non-performing loans (NPLs) worth Rs54 billion to the dams fund as banks had asserted that the loans borrowed from them were not liable to be paid.

Meanwhile, the top judge has also ordered to constitute a special bench to determine and sort out the pending amount to be paid by individuals and companies which had got loans worth billions of rupees written off by banks in 2002.

However, the court has also given a deadline of two months to the individuals and companies, if they want to deposit the pending amount in the Registrar Office of the SCP in order to avoid any consequences.

Subsequently, the court ordered the Ministry of Housing and Works to investigate into the alleged illegal residence of Islamabad Inspector General Police (IGP) Muhammad Aamir Zulfiqar Khan.

The CJP expressed anger and called the IGP to the rostrum, and said “you had come to launch an operation on the Lal Masjid, and here you are occupying flats illegally. It is the residence of CDA’s member which you have occupied.”
To which the IGP replied that he was not aware about that fact.

Regarding funds recovery from certain influential people, the CJP asked “Why haven t any funds been recovered from Ishaq Dar, Fawad Hassan Fawad, PML-N s Pervaiz Rasheed and Ataul Haq Qasmi?”

The hearing was adjourned for an indefinite period.
In 2018, the Supreme Court had summoned 222 beneficiaries for their alleged involvement in getting NPLs written off by commercial banks, and subsequently ordered its recovery.
In 2002, the loans were revoked on the basis of a circular issued by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) after then finance minister Shaukat Aziz approved the loan write-off scheme during the regime of former president Pervez Musharraf.

In total, 222 beneficiaries had secured loans from eight banks and development finance institutions including the Bank of Khyber (BoK), Habib Bank Ltd (HBL), National Bank of Pakistan (NBP), United Bank Ltd (UBL), Industrial Development Bank of Pakistan (IDBP), Pak-Libya Holding Company, NIB Bank (now MCB), SME Bank and Zarai Taraquaiti Bank Ltd (ZTBL).

Meanwhile, the Chief Justice said: “Some people obeyed the August 12, 2018 order as 39 out of the 222 [firms] opted for the option of voluntary return of loans. We form a special bench to determine the amount to be returned by them.”

The bench quashed the case to the extent of the companies that had returned the loans. “As banks said the loans borrowed from them are not liable to be paid, the recovered amount will be deposited in dams’ fund,” Justice Nisar remarked. – NNI