Luxury cars owned by Qatari ruling family under illegal use: sources

Dunya News

It is illegal for Pakistani citizens to use cars imported through diplomatic channels.

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – The luxury vehicles recovered from the compount of former chief of the now defunct Ehtasab Bureau, Saifur Rehman have been under illegal use, sources in the Foreign Office said Wednesday.

According to the sources, Qatari Prince Hamad bin Jassim is allowed to export cars under Pakistan Customs Tariff but it is illegal for Pakistani citizens to use cars imported through diplomatic channels.

The luxury vehicles were only to be used by the Qatari ruling family or in projects initiated by the Qatari government in Pakistan, they added.

The Qatari embassy Tuesday issued a clarification pertaining to the recovery of 21 luxury vehicles from the compound of a textile mill owned by Saifur Rehman.

In his letter, Qatari Ambassador Saqr Bin Mubarak Al Mansouri said the luxury vehicles were legally brought to Pakistan and were then to be used for hunting purposes.

The cars belong to the Qatari ruling family and had been parked in the properties owned by Rehman in Lahore, Karachi, and Islamabad, he added.

Customs officials, however, said the embassy did not disclose ownership of the vehicles in its letter to the Pakistani authorities. They added that the cars were illegaly parked as the authorities did not find any import document.

Authorities Monday night recovered the vehicles from inside a deserted building of Redco Textile Mills situated in Callar Syedan area of Rawalpindi. Saifur Rehman, a close aide of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, owns the textile mills.

According to Customs Intelligence officials, more than 40 luxury vehicles were parked in the textile mills building out of which 20 were shifted to some other place before the operation.

They informed that all the vehicles had the number plates of the Qatari embassy. Sources further informed that the operation was conducted on the orders of DG Customs Intelligence Shaukat Ali.