Govt directs crackdown against sugar mafia, July 27, 2020

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Govt directs crackdown against sugar mafia, July 27, 2020

ISLAMABAD-The Federal Government on Monday directed the concerned authorities to launch a crackdown against sugar mafia in light of the sugar inquiry commission report and submit implementation report in next 90 days.

      Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Accountability Mirza Shahzad Akbar has written separate letters to governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) , chief secretaries of Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh to launch a crack down against sugar mafia.

Sugar Inquiry Commission report has also been annexed with the letters written after seeking consent of the Prime Minister Imran Khan.The federal cabinet has already accorded consent to action plan on June 23 to implement the sugar commission report.

  According to a press release, the federal government also sought clarification from Competitive Commission of Pakistan (CCP) over delay in action against sugar cartels. The CCP will investigate matters like sugar hoarding and non-supply of sugar at utility stores.

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has been directed to conduct an audit of all sugar mills across the country to investigate the matters related to Benami accounts, dubious transactions and tax evasion.

According to the letter, Governor  State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has been directed to investigate into sugar mills’ loans and dubious exports and submit a comprehensive report in this regard.

      Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has been tasked to probe corporate fraud and the export issue of sugar mills.

Likewise, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has been directed to fix the responsibility under the facts of sugar commission report.

The anti-corruption watchdog has also been tasked to analyse the aspects of subsidies which went against laws.

The concerned departments would also investigate the reportedly given loans on interest and short payments to sugarcane growers despite receiving hefty subsidies from the government.

Provincial Anti Corruption departments were authorised to conduct investigations against sugar mills, says the letter.

The action against sugar barons was delayed due to Court cases filed by the sugar mills association.