Evidence of Shehbaz family’s involvement in money laundering collected: Akbar

Shehbaz Sharif's income increased in 10 years when PML-N was ruling in Punjab, says anti-graft watchdog

APP May 13, 2020
Shahbaz Sharif's income increased in ten years when Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz was ruling in Punjab, says Akbar PHOTO: APP/File

ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Accountability Shahzad Akbar on Wednesday said that assets of the Sharif family had significantly increased in 10 years when Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was ruling in Punjab.

He said that Shehbaz Sharif had established dozens of paper front companies on employees’ name for money laundering and documentary evidence of all these unlawful transactions had been collected and it would not be easy for him to escape the law.

While addressing a press conference, he said it has come under notice that there was a surge in the assets of Shehbaz Sharif and his family from 2008 to 2018.

Mentioning the source of income, he added that the source of their income was Telegraphic Transfers (TTs) sent to them by poor employees of their companies. He said that the money was sent abroad through Hundi and then sent back via TTs.

He said through a paper firm 'GNC' transactions of billions of rupees were done by two front-men and close friends of Salman Shehbaz, Nisar Gill and Ali Ahmed. He said that Shehbaz Sharif had taken the plea that his sons were grown up and he was not responsible for their actions. However, he appointed Nisar Gill and Ali Ahmed in Chief Minister's office as Director on Political Affairs and Director Policy.

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Akbar added that a company titled as 'Nisar Trading Company' was registered in the name of Sharif Feed Mills employee Rashid Karamat and Rs425 million transactions were done in this firm's account.

He said Rs450 million was deposited in the account of a company Khan Traders, registered in the name of the father of one Gulzar, an employee of Ramzan Sugar Mills.

He also said that Rs5 billion was deposited in the account of Maqsood and Co, a firm in the name of Malik Maqsood, who worked at the Sharif-owned Chiniot Energy Office as a peon.

Similarly, Rs350 million was deposited in the account of Azhar Abbas, Rs480 million in the account of Muhammad Anwar, Rs560 million in the account of Ghulam Shabbir and Rs210 million in the account of Tanveerul Haq, all employees of Ramzan Sugar Mills.

Overall Rs17.4 billion was deposited in paper firms and benami accounts of the employees of Shehbaz Sharif companies whose monthly salaries were from Rs18,000 per month to Rs70,000. He said that all details of these employees were available with Employees’ Old-Age Benefits Institution (EOBI) record and nobody could deny that they were not working with Shehbaz Sharif's firms.

He said that as per collected documentary proofs, Rashid Karamat, resident of a slum near Gulberg, Lahore was a procurement assistant earning Rs18,000 per month. How were Rs450 million transferred in his account, he asked.

He said that two employees so Shehbaz Sharif namely Masroor Anwar and Shoaib Qamar transferred big amounts from Nisar Trading Company account to Shehbaz Sharif and Hamza Shehbaz accounts and copies of the CNICs of both of them were available with the concerned bank branches.

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He said that when party members of the PML-N were questioned about the cheques given by them deposited in Nisar Trading Company, the accounts of Hamza and Shehbaz Sharif they said that had given donations for party funds. However, he questioned as to why those people donated who either got some contracts from Punjab government or they got political benefits.

He asked Shehbaz Sharif if these allegations were baseless, he should drag him courts in London as he used to claim and he should give answers to these questions in the courts and media.

Responding to the questions of media, Akbar said that arrest of any accused was the purview of National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

He demanded that name of Shehbaz Sharif should be put in Exit Control List (ECL) as there was chance that with hot winds blowing here, he might go to England to celebrate Eid there.

Dispelling the impression that only opposition party leaders were victimized, he said that in the history of accountability for the first time the government was doing self-accountability and inquiry on sugar and wheat shortage were its manifestation.

He said that PTI was fighting against the obsolete system and not against Sharifs and Zardaris, who were its beneficiaries.

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