ISLAMABAD: Massive irregularities have been exposed within the Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) and the regional office in Karachi.
Sources revealed that registration and enrolment of companies take place on weekends when the office is closed for public but hand-picked agents are allowed. The registrations have no legal status but are allotted to PEC members, their friends and businessmen in regard to hefty payments.
For this purpose, a committee has been formed involving PEC members in Karachi. The minutes of their meeting are kept in official records but it cannot be ascertained if they belong to the same meeting as there is no video recording. Neither is there any CCTV in office premises so the irregularities are not exposed.
The working of the PEC shows the massive influence of agents in connivance with the organizing committee. When Deputy Registrar Zafar was contacted, a junior clerk informed that he was out of office and had left his personal mobile phone. However, it was observed that he walked out of the office in his vehicle.
An assistant director, on the condition of anonymity, disclosed that PEC members have given a free-hand to agents, and only allow those officers who are not an impediment in these efforts. He added that Zafar is responsible for internal conflicts and blackmailing employees. He also claimed to have influence with army officers and use it to get away with the situation.
He revealed that PEC members are concerned about their vested interests and despite million of rupees being received from the registration of engineering companies, the office is still deprived of basic facilities neither is there a website of the Karachi office.
The absence of a website gives more influence to agents and engineers and companies are also unable to get any credible information regarding fees and other regularities. Some clients present at PEC office revealed that website does provide the updated fees. An agent revealed this is purposely done so that the client turns to them.
Those who refuse seem massive delays for month in the registration of companies while those involving agents move on a fast track bases, while these agents have unhindered access in PEC offices. Subsequent efforts to contact Deputy Registrar Zafar and Additonal Registrar Niaz were in vain as they refused to attend calls or answer any questions.
Sources revealed that regional offices in Lahore, Peshawar and Quetta do have any Additional Registrar but the Karachi office has two officers, including one who is ineffective but received privileges. It has been revealed that Zafar is high influential while the reputation and prestige of the PEC is being tarnished.