The Supreme Court on Friday rejected yet another report of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in the National Insurance Company Ltd (NICL) scam and directed the agency to recover the looted money within two weeks.
A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, and comprising Justice Nasirul Mulk and Justice Jawwad S Khawaja, heard the case.
At the onset of the hearing, Director Legal FIA Azam Khan submitted an interim report pertaining to recovery of Rs420 million in the scam.
The same bench, on Wednesday, had expressed anger over the bouncing of recovery cheques after Khan informed them that a cheque worth Rs420 million from the accused had bounced.
Expressing annoyance over the contents of the report, the bench on Friday directed the agency to show progress in the case by recovering the plundered amount.
Earlier on Thursday, the court had directed FIA to submit a written reply about the recoveries.
The chief justice, in his remarks, asked whether it was also the court’s duty to recover the embezzled money.
Acting secretary commerce, Munir Qureshi, told the bench that a joint secretary of the ministry found the appointment of Sardar Ayaz Khan Niazi as chairman NICL lawful.
The chief justice said that prima facie, Qureshi is defying court orders to protect influential people, prompting Qureshi to seek more time to probe Niazi’s appointment.
The court has ordered arrest of those responsible for the appointment of Niazi who was the former head of NICL. Commerce Minister Makhdoom Amin Faheem had granted the approval for the appointment. Faheem is also being investigated for financial ties with Niazi.
FIA’s Azam Khan also informed the bench that Director General FIA has issued directives to the concerned probing officer to complete investigation against Mohsin Habib Warraich, one of the accused of the NICL scam, within a week. Khan submitted that FIA has also contacted Interpol for arresting Warraich.
Later, the bench adjourned hearing of the case for two weeks.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 18th, 2012.