PAC to hold an exclusive moot on Railways issues

By Ali Imran

ISLAMABAD: The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Monday decided to hold an exclusive meeting on the matters related to Pakistan Railways’ overall performance, functioning and initiatives. The committee meeting held here at Parliament House under the chairmanship of Rana Tanveer Hussain, MNA.
The committee also examined the audit report for the year 2019-20 of Ministry of Railways. Chairman of the committee expressed concerns over the recent fatal accident and directed Pakistan Railways to conduct a detailed inquiry in this regard.
He said that Railways should bring improvement in its overall system to reduce such tragic accidents.
During audit of the Railways Estate Development and Marketing Company (REDAMCO) in June 2019, it was observed that a piece of land measuring 13,599 Sq.ft (1511 SqYd) at Wazir Mansion Station, Marri Pur Road, Karachi was offered for commercial exploitation on 33 years on rental basis during April 2009.
Audit was of the view that the rental ceiling had been ascertained by Pakistan Banking Association accredited valuator, PR Management could have generated more revenue. This resulted in irregular leasing of Railway land amounting to Rs. 612.99 million for 33 years.
The committee referred the audit para to National Accountability Bureau (NAB) regarding irregular lease of land by overriding the decision of Executive Committee. The committee also examined the audit para related to irrational consumption of electricity on service buildings.
During audit, it was observed that 71,970,988 electric units valuing Rs. 1,416.67 million were charged to the service buildings without justification for the period from 2016 to 2018.
The management replied that electricity was purchased on bulk tariff and was sold to the consumers (residential colonies) on domestic tariff which resulted in loss amounting to Rs. 202.17 million in Karachi Division Rs.29.88 million in Sukkur Division due to difference in tariff.