While former Pak strongman General Musharraf is enjoying life abroad, a poor meter reader of the Islamabad Electric Supply Company IESCO has been punished for allegedly disclosing Musharraf's power-theft scandal to the media, reports Usman Manzoor in The News, Islamabad.
The IESCO has withheld his salary and other outstanding arrears for the last six months.
Musharraf had constructed a modern house on the farmland, ostensibly obtained for breeding poultry and growing vegetables and was enjoying the cheapest of power tariffs, a D-2(1) connection, which is meant for agricultural tube-wells and lift irrigation pumps and was even subsidised by the government from the taxpayers' money.
The scandal hit the headlines a few months ago but instead of recovering the money from the owner of the property, meter reader Manzoor Shah is being blamed for leaking this report to the media and ultimately he is facing the wrath of the high-ups of the company.
Details reveal that Manzoor Shah has not been paid his salary since May 2009 without assigning any reason. “Neither I am being paid the monthly salary nor my outstanding dues have been cleared,” said Manzoor Shah while talking to The News. He mentioned that Iesco was holding him responsible for the disgrace of the ex-general and other elites.
He said in an old case he had won the court battle against the Iesco and the court had directed the body to pay his three-year salary but it was being delayed. He has also written to the chief justice of Pakistan to take suo moto notice of this victimisation, as he is a poor man drawing a paltry Rs 6,599 per month salary.
IESCO spokesman Ameer Hussain Chamman said it was not in his knowledge that anybody was being victimised. He said if anyone's salary has been stopped or if anyone is facing any problem then he could write an application to the CEO and his problems would be addressed.
IESCO had also punished 64 other junior officers for their involvement in the power-theft scandal of Musharraf, Shaukat Aziz and others in the luxurious Chak Shahzad farm houses but the big guns have not been touched.
In August this year, Musharraf cleared all the outstanding electricity dues amounting to Rs 4,80,910 for his Chak Shahzad farm house to clear the fine imposed by IESCO.
The tarrif structure at Musharraf's house has been changed from D-2 to A-1, and the difference amount has been recovered,”Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO) MD Tahir Basharat Cheema had said. PEPCO had disconnected the power supply to Musharraf farm house in July, after he failed to pay outstanding bills.
Musharraf was given an electric connection for his farmhouse on agricultural rates, which are much lower than the domestic tariff. He, however, regularized the connection after much media interference. However, owners of 11 other farmhouses are yet to clear over Rs 20 lakh bill to the utility company.
Meanwhile, a petition filed in Pakistan's Supreme Court has asked the court to cancel the land allotted to Musharraf at Chak Shahzad.
The petition filed on October 29 by Jamil Akhtar stated that the land could only be used to grow vegetables and poultry but Musharraf's farmhouse had a swimming pool and a jogging track, among other facilities.
Petitioner's counsel Barrister Farooq Hassan requested the court to order the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to cancel the allotment because it was being used in an unauthorised manner.
He requested the court to take action against such violations by Musharraf. The petitioner also requested that Musharraf should be summoned to court and asked to explain how he got the Rs 30 crore, which was spent on the farmhouse at the allotted land.