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Aleem Khan Corruption Case is the Litmus Test of Anti Corruption Establishment, Punjab

Anti Corruption Establishment is investigating the alleged corruption of disgruntled Aleem Khan, who claims the case is politically motivated.
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A story by Riaz Khan

Anti-Corruption Establishment, Punjab, is the anti-graft agency of the Province of Punjab. It is the affiliated agency of the Services and General Administration Department, Punjab. Therefore, most positions are reserved for PAS/PMS officers, as the indigenous cadre needs vertical mobility. It is not an independent body but rather an agency of the S&GAD. Therefore, all appointments to top positions, especially those of director and above, are done at the discretion of the provincial government. Accordingly, the agency mainly works for the administrative desire of the government. ACE is an investigative agency, and the prosecution Department of the Province provides prosecution services to the agency’s investigations. Then, the trial is adjudicated by the judiciary, where the executive role is subsided, and the judicial position is ascertained.

The prevention of corruption act 1947 drives the agency, along with ACE rules 2014. There are more than 30 scheduled offences and special laws that deal with the agency. Primarily, the mandate of the investigative agency is to investigate public employees posted on provincial posts. Hence, private persons are also attached when they abet the public employees committing scheduled offences of the ACE. The agency initiates proceedings on the complaints or through its source reports. Source report is like a sou moto power of the ACE. As the agency is under the provincial government’s control, political entanglement is also part and parcel of the proceedings.

Through a resource report, the agency probed the revenue transactions of Aleem Khan and resultantly lodged the FIR against him. The agency claims that there are heinous transactions that fall under the scheduled offences of ACE; therefore, the transactions must be investigated criminally. However, Aleem Khan repeatedly says that the whole process is politically motivated, and he is on bail. In contrast, the investigation process is going on by a deputy director of ACE.

Source Report of the case contain all the factual position of revenue transactions as claimed by the ACE. It includes;

It is submitted that it came on surface through some reliable sources that state land measuring 30K – 10M situated in Mouza Bula Garhi Khewat No.83. Khasra No.93 etc. & land measuring 25K-0.5M situated in Mouza Kattar Band Khewal No.83. Khasra No.743,744,745,746,747 & 755 total land measuring 55K-15M was fraudulently occupied through preparation of forged layout plan & fictitious allotment letters by showing the state land as ownership of Park View City by Mr. Abdul ALeem Khan S/o Abdul Raheem Khan with his partners / shareholders / owners of M/s Vision Developers Pvt Limited and Management of Park View Cirty / River Edge Housing Scheme Lahore in connivance with Asghar Ali, Halqa Patwari Mouza Shahpur Kanjran, Javed Shahbaz, Sub-Engineer, Irrigation Department & Shafqat Niaz, Director MP-III, LDA etc.

Accused converted the canal/escape channel land into plots, named & number it as Platinum & Diamond Block and sold out the same to the general innocent public through preparation of bogus & forged allotment letters. In this way, they have not only misappropriated the State Land through bogus & forged documents but also defrauded the general public at large Therefore, in order to ascertain the truth preliminary enquiry under ACE Rules may kindly be imitated ACE Proceedings:- The inquiry learn submitted its “Final Report” dated 03.11.2022 with the recommendation of registration of case against Javed Shahbaz (Sub-Engineer Irrigation Department) Shafqat Niaz (Director MP-III LDA Lahroe). Haji Asghar (Patwari Mouza SHahpur Kanjran Lahore) Abdul ALeem Khan S/o Abdul Raheem Khan (Owner of Park View City/Vision Developers) Kiran Aleem Khan W/o Abdul Aleem Khan (Owner of Park View City/Vision Developers / Director of M/s Vision Developers) Zainab Aleem D/o Abdul Aleem Khan (Owner of Park View City/Vision Developers/Director of M/s Vision Developers) Muhammad Shoaib Siddique (Chief Executive Officer of Park View City / Vision Developers) Muhammad Atif Iftikhar (Secretary, Park View City / Vision Developers) The enquiry learn further recommended to thrash out the role of all others accused persons during the investigation. The competent authority approved the recommendations of the enquiry team vide letter dated 05.11.2022.

During the enquiry proceedings, it has been proved that the accused persons in connivance with each other prepared fake, forged and bogus allotments letter of the society and sold the precious state land to the innocent general public hence causing loss to the state exchequer. All the relevant documents have been taken into the possession. All the concerned have been heard and reports from all the departments have been collected. In these circumstances, the schedule offence u/s 409/420/407/468/471-PPC 5(2)47-PCA are made out; therefore, after lodging the case, the investigation of the case is entrusted to DDI ACE and ADL (Vigilance) Copies of FIRs is being sent to the authority.

The contours of the case are alarming. However, the disgruntled Aleem Khan has called the allegation frivolous and politically motivated. Then, ACE claims that the land mafia has been lawless in the country, and they have lodged the FIR on merit. However, for the public, the issue is significant for transparency and value. The offences of 409, 420, 467, 468, and 471, read with PCA, Act 1947, need proper scrutiny. The investigation is in process, and both parties claim differently. However, whatever the case may be, it is in the interest of justice to carry out a transparent investigation. The case should neither have the political compulsions nor the power of the accused. It is also a test case of the capacity of ACE, which has shown insufficient capacity in managing white-collar crime cases.

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