Hajj scam desicion: The Supreme Court of Pakistan

June 4, 2016
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The Supreme Court of Pakistan sentenced a former Minister for Religious Affairs Hamid Saeed Kazmi to 16 years in prison, two officials of this Ministry received 16 and 40 years imprisonment respectively. Three Pakistani government officials — Hamid Saeed Kazmi, Aftab Islam and Rao Shakil, have been jailed for their involvement in corruption in the pilgrimage. In fact, a total of 35,000 Pakistanis pilgrims were affected in 2010 Hajj due to high charges.

Special Judge Central Nazeer Ahmad considered the case on corruption in the Ministry of Religious Affairs, and convicted three former senior officials to jailing. Ex-minister will spend in prison next 16 years, and his associates awarded from Special Judge on 16 and 40 years jail term respectively.

The Hajj corruption case had surfaced in 2010 during political games between parties of Pakistan. Then Minister for Science and Technology Azam Swati accused his colleague Kazmi of his involvement in corruption in the pilgrimage. Important no note, that Hamid Saeed Kazmi was an influential minister in the government of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP).

As an irrefutable proof, Judge showed a letter from Saudi Prince Bander Bin Khalid Bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud. Thanks to this official document, in 2010, Ministry of Religious Affairs of Pakistan had rented residences for pilgrims during Hajj for up to 3,600 riyals. But the prices were actually around 1,500 riyals, so Prince had offered milder rates to the Ministry but his quotation was rejected. Thus, about 35,000 Pakistanis pilgrims were affected in 2010 Hajj due to high charges.

After all, former religious affairs minister Hamid Saeed Kazmi become a defendant of criminal case, opened by the Supreme Court of Pakistan on March 15, 2011.

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