Moonis Elahi, the son of former Punjab Chief Minister Pervez Elahi, was handed over to the custody of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) by a judicial magistrate in Lahore on Friday, in connection to his alleged involvement with the National Insurance Company (NICL) fraud.
FIA officials produced the younger Elahi, a member of the Punjab Assembly from the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) faction, before Judicial Magistrate Muhammad Eahtasham Sadiq’s court amid tight security. PML-Q supporters were present at the court and shouted slogans in Elahi’s favour.
The investigating officer of the case requested a seven-day physical remand of Moonis Elahi from the court, but was only awarded a three-day remand by the magistrate. The FIA had argued that the authorities need to recover Rs320 million from Elahi, which they claim he has transferred into the bank account of a manager at one of the companies he owns.
Elahi’s lawyer, however, pointed out that the entire Rs1.68 billion allegedly embezzled from the NICL has been returned by the principal suspect in the case, Mohsin Warraich, the son of a former federal cabinet minister. He argued that, given that the money had already been recovered, the case against Elahi was tantamount to political victimisation.
The court handed over Elahi to the FIA, directing them to produce him again before the court by March 21, along with the results of their investigation till that date.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 19th, 2011.