KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) extended the interim bail of Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani’s brother and other accused in a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) case, pertaining to assets beyond means, on Tuesday. A two-member bench comprising Justice KK Agha and Justice Omar Sial heard the bail plea of Durrani’s brother, Gulzar Ahmed, and others.
The prosecutor informed the bench that a reference had been filed against the accused. NAB had filed a reference pertaining to assets beyond means against Durrani and his wife, daughters and sons, among 20 other persons. According to NAB’s charge sheet, the accused were involved in the corruption of up to Rs1.6 billion. On the basis of these charges, NAB had arrested Durrani from a hotel in Islamabad, in February this year.
Barrister Khawaja Naveed, counsel for Rehmatullah Lashari, pleaded to the court that his client was not named in the NAB reference. He informed the court that NAB had recorded Lashari’s statement but his client was not wanted in the case by the NAB.
The bench dismissed Lashari’s plea after NAB prosecutor’s statement and ordered the return of bail money deposited by Lashari in the court.
The court adjourned hearing till June 27.
Illegal allotment case
A two-member bench of SHC ordered former local government minister Jam Khan Shoro to cooperate with NAB in the investigation of a case pertaining to illegal allotment of government land and possession of illegal assets. It also ordered NAB to continue the investigation within legal limits.
The bench comprising Justice KK Agha and Justice Omar Sial was hearing the bail pleas of Shoro and 15 others accused in the case.
During the hearing, NAB prosecutor maintained that Shoro has not been co-operating with NAB and has not responded to the call-up notice issued by NAB.
Shoro’s councel, Khalid Javed Khan, asked the court to give his client more time to submit the reply and said that his client would fully cooperate with NAB, provided that the investigation is conducted within legal limits. He argued that investigation pertaining to CNG stations was based on ill-will.
The court asked Shoro’s counsel, “Have you received the questionnaire?” The counsel said that the questionnaire has been received and it includes questions about the quantity of CNG sold in the past 30 years.
Shoro’s counsel argued how his client could present a 30-year record of private CNG stations and what was the connection between private CNG stations and loss caused to the National Treasury.
The court ordered Shoro to cooperate with NAB and ordered NAB to carry out the investigation staying within legal limits. It also remarked that Shoro should submit a proper reply to the questionnaire issued to him and enquired whether all the accused in the case were imprisoned. The court further enquired whether a reference had been filed by the NAB.
The court adjourned the hearing till August 7.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 12th, 2019.