Pakistani parliament orders probe into anti-mines shoes scam

A special meeting of the Public Accounts Committee of parliament that looked into expenditures of the Defence Ministry during 1994-95 and 1997-98 considered the purchase of 23,809 pairs of anti-mine shoes as part of alleged irregularities in the purchase of military gear.

The meeting, chaired yesterday by lawmaker Riaz Hussain Pirzada, was informed by the Auditor General of Pakistan that under the financial regulations of 1986, no government purchases could be made without open tenders.

The anti-mine shoes were purchased from a single firm and payments were made from the defence budget. After the lapse of several years, the deal was not regularised and this violated a commitment made in 2004 to get this done.

The parliamentary panel asked for an inquiry into the matter to be completed within a month. It also said such violations should not be repeated.

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