Mr Murad Saeed PTI MNA from Swat and I have moved a privilege motion in the National Assembly against Mr Ishaq Dar with regard to misinforming the National Assembly on the $200 billion deposited by Pakistanis in Swiss bank accounts. In answer to my oral question in 2014 he stated that it was $200 billion and in answer to Mr Murad Saeed's written question on 14th April 2016 the answer was different. The text of the motion is:
QUESTION OF PRIVILEGE
We hereby raise a question of Privilege under Rule 95 of Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the National Assembly, 2007.
The Minister of Finance Mr Ishaq Dar commented in the National Assembly and in the press in reply to a question of Dr Arif Alvi on 9th May 2016 the Minister quoted:
“Statements by a Swiss banker and a former Swiss government minister: “One of the directors of Credit Suisse AG stated on the record that $97 billion worth of Pakistani capital was deposited only in his bank. Similarly, Micheline Calmy-Rey, a former Swiss foreign minister, is reported to have put the amount of Pakistani money hidden in Switzerland at $200 billion — a statement that was never contradicted.
Saying that he believed the figures were correct, Mr Dar said the situation called for immediate corrective action. To put the enormity of this find into perspective, Pakistan’s total external debt stands at $150 billion and its gross domestic product is said to be around $300 billion. The country can, theoretically, pay off all its debt with the money in Swiss banks and still have nearly a quarter of it left over.”
If the record of the Assembly is gone through it would be found that the Finance Minister has made many statements in this regard but in a written answer on a question # 54 by Mr Murad Saeed on 14th April 2016, asking ‘whether it is a fact that more than 200 billion dollars of Pakistanis are in Swiss Banks at present’ the Minister of Finance stated that ‘No. The claims about such money are mostly based on media reports without any documentary support. Further the opinions therein are generally speculative in nature’.
Mr Rana Afzal the parliamentary secretary of Finance in response to Dr Arif Alvi in his supplementary question gave details on the efforts for recovery of US $200 billion.
There is a major contradiction in these two positions. The National Assembly was misinformed and my privilege has been breached.
Dr Arif Alvi NA-250
Murad Saeed MNA
Dated 15th April 2016