PESHAWAR: Peshawar High Court has asked the National Accountability Bureau not to arrest former premier’s son-in-law Capt (retd) Muhammad Safdar without a 10-day prior arrest warrant.
A two-member bench comprising Justice Roohul Amin, Justice Muhammad Ayub was hearing on Thursday the case of alleged embezzlement in the development funds in the NA-21.
Safdar’s lawyer told the court that inquiries were underway in NAB and it could arrest him anytime without warrant.
The counsel told the court: “we are regularly appearing in various cases around the country, but the government institutions are filing more cases, which my client does not know about.”
Justice Amin said: “why is your client reluctant from appearing in the NAB related cases. Ask him to appear before the accountability institution without any fear.”
He asked the Safdar’s lawyer to cooperate with NAB and they would not arrest him without a warrant. “We ask NAB to issue 10-day prior notice to Capt (retd) Safar before his arrest in any accountability case,” Justice Amin told NAB prosecutors
NAB prosecutors Jameel Khan and Azeem Dad told the court that the accountability body issued arrest warrants to Sadfar in funds embezzlement case because he was not cooperating in the investigation.
They told the high court bench that NAB has carried out inquiries in the NA-21 development funds and has enough evidence to investigate Safdar.
Between June and December 2017, the then PML-N government had doled out Rs54 billion to parliamentarians for development spending, taking the total discretionary spending to a whopping Rs130 billion in about three years.
Billions were also spent in NA-21, the constituency of Capt (retd) Safdar who was tasked by his father-in-law to monitor the distribution and utilisation of development funds in K-P. Some of the schemes in his constituency included the construction of a road from Blimanag to UC Nelban in tehsil Hilkot, Mansehra, worth Rs3 million; construction of a road from Harrori to Shangretta for Rs3 million; construction of a road from Bhugurmang to Bisala for Rs3 million; and the construction of a road from Hilkot to Kund for Rs4 million.
In January 2018, NAB got records of the development schemes executed in the NA-21, Mansehra, constituency during the last four years.
The Communication and Works Department handed over the documents to a NAB team probing the Rs2 billion corruption charges against Safdar.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 11th, 2019.
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