Ina crackdown on irregularities committed during former Public Works Minister and PDP leader Naeem Akhtar's tenure, the Jammu and Kashmir Crime Branch, on Sunday has questioned him about the allotment of contracts for the J-K Projects Construction Corporation (JKPCC), according to sources.
Speaking to PTI about the questioning, Akhtar has denied any wrongdoing on his side saying that he has followed due process in all his ministerial activities. He added that he was cooperating with the officials.
"I am sure that the truth will prevail. I have done nothing wrong and all due processes were followed," he said adding "I have answered all the questions and clarified the matter. I am sure that the matter is sorted out. I have full faith in the judiciary."
Sources further report that the Akhtar who is a close aide of PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti has serious charges of financial embezzlement levelled against him. Akhtar had allegedly awarded JKPCC contracts to fake companies adding that the companies who had received the contracts reportedly had no experience and had allegedly been floated days ahead of the contracts had been awarded, as per sources.
As per sources, there were also alleged irregularities in the employment in several JKPCC employees during Akhtar's tenure as minister. Sources have further said that there were irregularities in the construction of air-conditioners in several hospitals. Akhtar's junior - Vice-chairman JKPCC Khalid Jahangir had reportedly written to the J&K Governor highlighting the financial irregularities in the process.
Investigating Officials have revealed that Akhtar was questioned at his residence about giving out work at JKPCC to a specific set of contractors and making some appointments without following the due process, according to PTI.
Syed Naeem Akhtar Andrabi - a spokesperson of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) has openly criticized the National Conference party and former chief minister Omar Abdullah during the 2010 Kashmir unrest.
After being elected to the J&K Legislative Council in 2013, he was included in the Mufti Mohammad Sayeed cabinet in 2015 as the Education Minister. During the cabinet reshuffle in 2017, former J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti handed over the Public Works Department to Akhtar.