General Qamar Bajwa’s family became billionaires in six years – Times of India

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s outgoing army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s extended family became billionaires after he took command of the military in 2016, accumulating assets and businesses of more than Rs 12.7 billion within and outside the country over the past six years, said a report published on investigative website FactsFocus.
The report prompted finance minister Ishaq Dar to take notice Monday of the “illegal and unwarranted” leak of tax records of Gen Bajwa’s family members. He directed Tariq Mehmood Pasha, PM Shehbaz Sharif’s special assistant on revenue, to personally lead an immediate investigation into the violation of tax laws, breach of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) data, affix responsibility and submit a report within 24 hours.
Citing annual tax returns and wealth statements of Gen Bajwa’s family from 2013 to 2021, the report claimed that his wife Ayesha Amjad wasn’t filing any tax returns when he became a lieutenant general, while Sabir “Mithu” Hameed, his closest friend and father-in-law of his eldest son, was an average businessman. “Everything changed for both families as they moved ahead and became one family.”
Within six years, according to the report, both families became billionaires, started an international business, purchased multiple foreign properties, started transferring capital abroad, became owners of commercial plazas, commercial plots, huge farmhouses in Islamabad and Karachi, an immense real estate portfolio in Lahore, and so on.
“The current market value of the “known” assets and businesses within Pakistan and outside accumulated by the Bajwa family during the last six years is more than Rs 12.7 billion,” the report said.
The tax records said his wife’s wealth went from zero in 2016 to Rs 2.2 billion (declared and known) in six years. It stated that the amount didn’t include residential plots, commercial plots and houses given by the army to her husband as chief of the army staff.
It alleged that the total worth of declared assets of Gen Bajwa’s daughter-in-law, Mahnoor Sabir, was zero in the last week of October 2018. It jumped to more than Rs 1,271 million just one week before her marriage on November 02, 2018.
Though Mahnoor Sabir declared these properties to the tax authorities in 2018, the filing retrospectively stated that these properties were acquired in the tax years 2014, 2015, and 2016. The declarations were made to show that every single property was purchased before Gen Bajwa became the army chief in November 2016.
These annual returns, along with the declarations for the tax year 2017, were made on September 14, 2018, and October 23, 2018. Later, declarations for the year 2018 were also submitted on December 17, 2018.
Mahnoor also became “the manager” of an oil company, Taxx Petroleum Pakistan, in November 2019. Taxx Petroleum, currently registered as an overseas company in Pakistan with its head office in Dubai, was first registered in Pakistan on November 14, 2018, and later registered in the UAE on January 16, 2019.
Incorporation documents of the company taken from Pakistan show Sabir “Mithu” Hameed, father of Mahnoor, and his brother Nasir Hameed as directors. However, Taxx Petroleum, which started its operations across Pakistan within days following its incorporation, is being run by Mahnoor from its declared head office in Dubai. Mahnoor’s LinkedIn profile lists her as a senior manager at Taxx Petroleum.
Assets of Mahnoor’s other three sisters, including a minor, and mother also grew from zero in 2016 to “billions” in the following years.
Furthermore, the tax returns of Sabir Hameed—father-in-law of Gen Bajwa’s son, Saad Siddique Bajwa—were less than a million in 2013. But “in the coming years, he became a billionaire”, the website said.
According to the publication, it was unable to obtain data about assets in the name of Gen Bajwa’s two sons. FactsFocus claimed that after the publication of the story, the traffic on its site was “disrupted”, while also claiming that the website had been “banned”.
The website had also published comprehensive stories on the “misappropriation of funds” by a number of politicians and other powerful sectors in Pakistan, including PTI chairman Imran Khan and former dictator General Pervez Musharraf.
In 2020, the publication had released a report regarding the alleged offshore properties and businesses of former China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Authority chairman Lt-Gen retired Asim Saleem Bajwa and his family.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *