LAHORE - City police department has unearthed a scandal of over 500 'ghost policemen drawing salaries regularly thereby depriving the government of millions of rupees with the alleged connivance of the officials of concerned branch. The scandal appeared at a time when the police department had already defaulted the payment of millions of rupees under the head of petrol. The local petrol pumps have suspended fuel supply to the police vans due to non-payment. To overcome the situation, the police department demanded the government for supplementary grant to pay the fuel dues to have the supply restored but without any luck so far. Police officials have now started getting the fuel tanks of the official vans filled from their own pockets, the sources said adding that if situation lingered on for one more month, it would be difficult for the 'Jawans to control crime in the city. On the directions of Capital City Police Officer Pervez Rathore, an inquiry committee has been constituted to probe into the incident of ghost policemen. The sources in police department say that during initial investigation the department immediately stopped salary of around 60 ghost policemen. When no policeman contacted the department concerned to inquire the reason of stopping salary, the existence of ghost police became all the more clear. The salaries were being drawn for the last several years with the connivance of the officials of the department concerned who were also taking shares from the salaries. During initial investigations, the exact amount under the head of salaries drawn by the 'fake constables could not be estimated so far. However, the official record is being examined by a team of experts according to whom the rough estimate is in millions of rupees. The matter was brought to the knowledge of the CCPO Lahore Pervez Rathore who taking serious notice of the misappropriation deputed the SSP Discipline to probe into the matter on priority basis and report him back as soon as possible. The police sources said that ghost policemen were 'enrolled in the official record by making forged documents showing them the regular personnel of the department on special duties. It is also learnt that traffic police department has also unearthed the similar misappropriation in the recent past when a traffic police constable who was later posted as traffic warden (on sub-Inspector rank) continued getting salary against his previous, as well as, new posting, causing a loss of Rs 300,000 to the police department. When contacted, the CCPO confirmed the incident of fraud and financial misappropriation saying that apparently it seemed that the number of the 'ghost policemen was not in hundreds. Initially, around 60 fake policemen have been identified drawing salaries for the last several years. The CCPO said that exemplary punishment would be given to the police officials involved in the embezzlement.