Chief Minister of Punjab Usman Buzdar under NAB radar as authority expanded the scope of inquiry against CM Punjab in liquor license awarding case.
The CM Punjab appeared in NAB Lahore to face an inquiry against him for awarding a liquor license to a hotel and in return taking Rs50 million as a bribe. Usman Buzdar remained in the NAB office for two hours.
According to the inside story, Usman Buzdar was unable to respond quickly when asked questions and claimed to provide questions in written form and sought time to fill answers. Upon asking questions regarding taking money CM Punjab denied it and labeled it as baseless allegations to malign his reputation by the opposition. The CM also said that he is running the office by following all the rules and regulations.
However, in a question regarding issuance of the license, under what rules he approved such license in which Buzdar unable to explain the business rules.
In the next question regarding assets beyond means and making assets in his relatives name, again Buzdar figuratively denied the allegations and asked NAB officials to write down the question and provide him extra time to answer the question.
Apart from Liquor license, Usman Buzdar received another 12 page questionnaire from NAB
CM Buzdar received a 12 pager questionnaire in which NAB asked to provide his assets details, family members, and relatives assets as well. NAB also bound CM Punjab to submit answers by 18 of August.
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NAB also in talks with some officials from Excise and Taxation Department who can be witness against CM Punjab in liquor license case.
The NAB started investigating the matter back in April and later it was converted into inquiry and now assets beyond means is also a part of the case.
According to the details, the liquor license was issued to Unicorn Prestigious Hotel in Lahore. The Hotel applied for the L-2 license from the Excise and Taxation Department without gaining license from Department of Tourist Services Punjab under Pakistan Hotels and Restaurant Act 1976 and Rule 1977 with 4/5 star rating.
In 2009 the rule was changed by at that time of the CM Punjab in which only hotels with 4/5 star rating can obtain L-2 liquor license. The officers from Excise and Taxation Department approved license to the Unicorn Prestigious Hotel in 2019 which was a violation of 2009 policy and without registering the license of the said hotel from the Tourist Services Punjab Department.