Audit finds massive irregularities in BRT

In Local
April 18, 2024



PESHAWAR:

TransPeshawar or the city’s bus rapid transport (BRT) system is suffering from continuous losses because of the lack of increase in its fares and rise in other financial expenses after the fuel price hike, it emerged on Wednesday.

According to the audit report 2022-23, the subsidy given by the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government to the BRT has reached from Rs3 billion to Rs5.07 billion.

According to TransPeshawar sources, when the BRT service was started in 2020, the price of petrol was Rs103.97 per litre and now it was Rs295 per litre.

Therefore, they added that the subsidy had been increased to meet the rising expenditures.

The report released by the Auditor General of Pakistan also detected several irregularities worth billions of rupees in the project.

It read that an expenditure of Rs13 billion in TransPeshawar was carried out without technical approval.

It added that expenditure incurred under various contracts of the BRT and unnecessary payments of Rs7.7 million were made in the form of salaries and allowances.

The report pointed out that TransPeshawar made illegal payments of Rs13 billion to companies without receiving approval from the competent authority.

It continued that because the fares were not increased, the national exchequer suffered a loss of Rs3 billion in the form of subsidy.

The audit report noted that as the construction of the project depot was not completed, the government suffered a loss of Rs22 million.

There was a loss of Rs30 million because of not providing buses on time.

The report read that because of the payment of sales tax, the provincial government lost Rs50 million and advertising money was illegally being given to private bus operators.

The record of income earned in the interest of money kept in banks for the project has not been provided, the report added.

In response, a TransPeshawar spokesperson claimed that there was no truth in the the irregularities pointed out in the audit report.

The spokesperson added that the audit report had not been finalised yet.

He maintained that the news was based on the initial questionnaire of the audit.

 “All expenses have been duly sanctioned and all income details are recorded,” the spokesperson added.

“Answers to all questions raised in the report along with relevant documents and evidence have been provided to the audit team.”

(With input from APP)

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