FGEHF told to withdraw F-14/15 allotment letters

* Ombudsman directs ministry to take action against officials involved in violation of seniority rules in allotment process

FGEHF told to withdraw F-14/15 allotment letters

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Ombudsman has directed the Federal Government Employees Housing Foundation (FGEHF) to cancel the allotment of plots to the employees who recently retired from their service, in Sector F-14/15.

The Ombudsman also directed the foundation to make the public aware about the decision through the media and as well as by uploading the decision on its official website.

The decision was taken in a case filed by seven complainants, including civil servants and an ambassador, claiming discrimination in the allotment process of plots in Bhara Kahu Phase II in Sector F-14/15.

In its decision, the Federal Ombudsman also directed the Ministry of Housing and Works to take legal action against the employees who had been involved in mismanagement and violation of seniority rules in the above process.

During the course of the proceedings, it was informed to the Federal Ombudsman that the housing foundation had introduced a scheme with name of Phase II in Sector F-14/15 in April 2015, in which the government employees were advised to register themselves in this scheme. The foundation would allot the plots in accordance of seniority basis.

Following the instructions, a large number of employees, including those who never get a plot from the housing foundation, had registered themselves in the scheme and the department had collected more than Rs. four billion rupees in this connection.

The foundation had already collected billions of rupees in line of the Bhara Kahu Housing Scheme.

The foundation repeatedly claimed that the plots would be allotted on seniority basis and merit would be ensured in the whole process. The department several times extended the registration date with an aim to collect more money.

During the proceedings, the foundation adopted the stance that the issuance of allotment letters to the retired employees was done on the recommendation of a sub-committee of the foundation. Setting aside the principal of allotment on seniority basis, the sub-committee divided the retired government employees into two categories.

In one list, employees retired from 1953 were made entitled and others who retired during 1949 to 1952 were deprived from the right.

The federal ombudsman rejected the plea of the foundation and directed it to adopt the principal on the basis of seniority, which was also claimed in the advertisements and the old employees had made registrations on this basis.

The recommendations of the sub-committee were reflecting that it had attempted to award the plots to some of its blue-eyed persons and the property dealers' mafia had also supported the foundation in this regard. It was also revealed during the hearing that the dealers' mafia had been found engaged in selling allotment letters of the foundation openly in the market.

The government employees had the stance that the PHA and FGEHF had become corruption hubs and NAB should take action against the corrupt elements in the department.

It may be mentioned here that despite the orders of the federal ombudsman, for withdrawal of allotment letters and publishing in the print media through advertisement in press and uploading it on the website, the foundation was still receiving the payments from those to whom plots had been allotted and none of the aforementioned steps were taken by the department even after five days of the verdict being passed.