No matter or situation is black and white; there’s always some twist to the story or more to it then what is being led on. When it comes to the law enforcement agencies in Pakistan, it is a maintained fact that the corruption runs deep down the rabbit hole.
The recent turn of events in Lahore, where an elite restaurant by the name Cafe’ Aylanto was raided by Punjab’s excise police and was sealed on the grounds of selling imported alcohol to the customers, has interesting developments to it.
The Excise and Taxation Officer Masood Bashir Warraich Who Conducted The Raid Has Been Made An OSD (Officer on Special Duty).
Excise DG issued a notice regarding Warriach’s dismissal from the position of ETO.
Warriach along with two ACs conducted the raid and recovered 12 bottles of alcohol. The pictures including the videos of the incident went viral. However, according to Pakistan Today, 13 of the staff members were arrested which mostly included the waiters.
Surprisingly, the FIR filed against the restaurant didn’t nominate the owners but included the waiters for serving the prohibited beverage. Warriach in an interview with a private channel informed that the raid was conducted on Lahore commissioners orders. However, the commissioner expressed displeasure over the owner’s names not being included in the FIR.
Although, There Is More to This, As Masood Has Been Accused Of Corruption.
He was accused of delaying the renewal of liquor licenses of four hotels in Lahore. Why? Because the management of these hotels refused to pay the 30% commission on their daily liquor sales to Warriach. At least this was the allegation, which former ETO rejected and denied.
Masood said, “I am being accused of corruption just because I implemented the rules,” continuing further with his claims that after he took charge, these four hotels were selling nearly 100,000 liquor bottles illegally every day, which reduced to 8,000 because of his efforts.
Moreover, in his defense, Warriach blamed the liquor mafia for tarnishing his reputation. He said, “Rumours about my character are being spread by the liquor mafia to discredit me.”
Excise Department Official Clarifies The Confusion Surrounding The Reason On Which ETO was Transferred.
It was being considered that Warriach’s dismissal as an ETO was linked to the raid, however, this notion was dismissed by the official of the concerned department. Instead, his transfer was in the process prior to this incident.
“The summary for the transfer of the ETO was sent three days prior to the raid,” reports quoted the official as saying.
Sources say that he was removed because of his poor performance. Adding to this information, the sources also said that the tax collection during the last two months was considerably low (only 10%) compared to last year’s statistics.
It’s definitely not as clear as it might seem or as simple for that matter. However, his suspension over poor performance can be taken as a positive development within the law-enforcing authorities for properly exercising accountability within their departments.
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