The Sindh High Court adjourned the hearing of a constitutional petition filed by Federal Religious Affairs Minister Syed Khursheed Shah against an accountability court order.
The division bench also issued notices on Tuesday to all respondents, including the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman and the anti-terrorism courts administrative judge.
On March 12, the administrative judge of accountability courts at Karachi had directed the NAB chairman to file a reference against Shah within 30 days.
The petitioner has been facing allegations of owning assets beyond his known sources of income since 2005. According to the case investigating officer (IO), Shah owned properties worth Rs6.58 million when he did hold a public office, but his total assets now stand at Rs36.07 million. The IO in his last report, however, submitted that no allegations could be proved against the suspect. The new NAB chairman requested the court to close investigations against Shah, but the accountability court rejected the application.
On Tuesday, the petitioner’s counsel submitted that the dismissal of the NAB chairman’s plea to close investigation against Shah was “without lawful authority and in excess of jurisdiction”. Under Section 9(a)(v) of the National Accountability Ordinance, the NAB chairman alone can decide whether a reference is made against an accused or not, he added.
Justices Maqbool Baqar and Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi also heard NAB Prosecutor General (PG) KK Agha. He asked the bench to give him more time to submit comments. The bench allowed his request and adjourned the petition to an unspecified date.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 13th, 2012.
More in SindhShaheed Benazir Bhutto University: Only months into classes, ‘politicised’ allegations emerge