ISLAMABAD: National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Chairman Justice (r) Javed Iqbal has said that death sentences over corruption may cut Pakistan’s population by half, a private TV channel reported on Sunday. Addressing a ceremony at the President House on occasion of International Anti-Corruption Day, the NAB chief warned elements in society trying to spread propaganda against the anti-corruption watchdog, adding that the people of Pakistan were not so gullible that they could not differentiate between right and the wrong. He said those who had previous called NAB a ‘dead wood’ were now, to some extent, willing to accept that it had become a tree with branches and was in bloom. “Whether you do propaganda or not, NAB must continue its work,” he asserted.The NAB chief said, “We are no longer living in a time when you are given a wrong order and you say that it is okay.” “NAB does not do legislation to punish the corrupt elements, it is prerogative of the parliament,” he said. “People should know that NAB is using its authorities, he said. Every step taken by NAB will be for the citizens and state of Pakistan,” he added. “I have been successful in making people in power realise that those involved in corruption will have to give an answer,” the NAB chief said. “What’s wrong in asking from the people about their means of income who owned a 70cc motorbike in the past but today own huge towers in Dubai?” he asked. “When I ask someone that I found out that instead of spending Rs 500,000, Rs 5 million were spent, and in place of Rs 5 million, an amount of Rs 500 million was spent … what is wrong in asking this?. This is the poor nation’s money,” he continued.The NAB chairman said the bureaucracy had been worried since he came to power, but assured them that he himself had remained a bureaucrat and would use the resources available to NAB with integrity and ‘in the best possible way’. Describing the country’s bureaucracy as its spine, he said, “If it hurts, therapy must be done.” “The Supreme Court has said this many times, that every bureaucrat will only follow those orders which are in according with law,” he said, adding that the apex court had in the past always taken action in the event that a bureaucrat was being treated unfairly.“The loyalty of the bureaucrats should be with the government. Every bureaucrat should go along with the government’s orders which are according to the law,” he said. “Time is moving forward, we are living in the present and we should make sure our future is better,” he added. Published in Daily Times, December 10th 2018.