WARSAW - The ruling party in Poland is under fire for allegations that one of the officials took bribes to issue a large number of visas to applicants from Asia and Africa
The anti-immigration Polish government is facing criticism for allegations of issuing hundreds of thousands of working visas in exchange for bribes and an anti-corruption body has launched a formal probe into the episode.
At the end of August, the country's foreign ministry was searched by the local anti-corruption body and soon afterward, Deputy Foreign Minister Piotr Wawrzyk was fired for not collaborating with the investigation.
Wawrzyk was shown the door for "lack of sufficient co-operation" with the investigation, but reportedly, he is suspected of helping to create the scheme and forcing consuls to issue visas to people of his choosing.
Last week, he was reportedly hospitalised with life-threatening injuries in what appeared to be a suicide attempt.
The scandal revolves around a cash-for-visa scheme, through which aspiring immigrants in a developing African nation were able to "buy stamped visas" from intermediaries by bribing and "writing a name".
Reports say that in other developing countries, a €4,500 payment was enough to secure a visa from a Polish consulate via an intermediary company, EuroNews reported.
Among the Polish consulates now being investigated are outposts in countries from Taiwan and the Philippines to Tanzania and Nigeria.
As the scandal made headlines last year, it was reported that a group of applicants from India pretending as Bollywood filmmakers were given work visas in connection with a non-existent movie project titled "Asati".
Interestingly, another larger group was granted visas in the same fashion as they were making a film named "Milton in Malta".
Meanwhile, the German government has asked Poland for a "rapid and complete clarification" of the situation. The severity of the situation can be accessed from the fact that the Polish ambassador was summoned by Germany over the same saga.
What is more interesting is the fact that the scandal made headlines a month before crucial parliamentary elections.
As the countdown to the pivotal parliamentary elections ticks down to less than a month, the political landscape stands poised for potential upheaval, with the populist incumbent party PiS facing the possibility of being ousted from power.
Pakistani rupee remains largely stable against the US dollar, and other currencies in the open market on Sunday.
On Sunday, the US dollar was being quoted at 283.4 for buying and 285.95 for selling.
Euro comes down to 307 for buying and 310 for selling. British Pound rate remains unchanged at 358.5 for buying, and 362 for selling.
UAE Dirham AED witnessed slight drop and new rate stands at 77.2 whereas the Saudi Riyal remained stable at 76.
Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)
|UK Pound Sterling||GBP||358.5||362|
|Hong Kong Dollar||HKD||36.37||36.72|
|New Zealand Dollar||NZD||175.33||177.33|
Gold prices decreased in local markets in line with the trend in the international market.
On Sunday, the price of a single tola of 24-karat gold stands at Rs216,300, and 10 grams of 24k gold costs Rs185,450.
Single tola of 22 Karat Gold price costs Rs198,274, 21 karat rate per tola costs Rs189,263 and 18k gold rate is Rs162,225 for each tola.
In the global market, gold prices hovers around $2,004 per ounce, after drop of $23.35 on Sunday.
|Lahore||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Karachi||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Islamabad||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Peshawar||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Quetta||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Sialkot||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Attock||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Gujranwala||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Jehlum||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Multan||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Bahawalpur||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Gujrat||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Nawabshah||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Chakwal||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Hyderabad||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Nowshehra||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Sargodha||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Faisalabad||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|
|Mirpur||PKR 216,300||PKR 2,486|