Pakistan Peoples Party legislator Ali Musa Gilani has approached the Lahore High Court for pre-arrest bail in the ephedrine quota allocation case, insisting that there was no evidence against him.
Justice Iftikhar Hussain Shah and Justice Ibadur Rehman Lodhi of the LHC’s Rawalpindi bench will take up the bail plea of Ali Musa, former premier Yousaf Raza Gilani’s son, on July 16.
Filed through advocate Dr Khalid Ranjha, Ali Musa maintained that he was not nominated in the FIR registered with the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) Rawalpindi and there is no direct evidence against him available on record with the investigators.
He further told the court that he had been cooperating with the ANF in the investigations and was ready to respond to each and every query of the investigators.
Talking to the media, Advocate Chaudhry Faisal Hussian said the prosecution in the case needed strong collaborative evidence to prove the statement of two approvers – former Health Director General (DG) Dr Rasheed Jumma and Rizwan Khan, a director of a pharmaceutical company as well as an accused in the case. Their statements in the case, which alleged the illegal allocation of 9,000 kilogrammes of ephedrine to two medicine companies, are not in accordance with relevant criminal laws, the lawyer maintained.
The ANF obtained arrest warrants for the accused on June 20 after Dr Jumma volunteered to become an approver against him as well as former health secretary Khushnood Akhtar Lashari and former health minister Makhdoom Shahabuddin.
On July 2, 2012, Ali Musa obtained protective bail from the Sindh High Court for two weeks to access the trial court and investigators.
The high court is also going to take up the bail petition of Shahabuddin, Dr Jumma, former deputy drug controller Abdul Sattar Surani.
Former DG health fails to record statement
Meanwhile, the Special Judge Control of Narcotics Substance could not record the statement of Dr Jumma as approver, following his mysterious disappearance.
Following Friday’s no-show, the ANF also failed to present Dr Jumma before the trial court on Saturday to record his statement against Ali Musa, Shahabuddin and Lashari.
ANF Special Public Prosecutor Wasim Ahmed informed the court that Dr Jumma was not well and would not be able to be present in court at the next date of hearing either.
Meanwhile, the court of magistrate for ANF did not record the statement of two others accused in the case –Cann Pharmaceutical Multan chief executive Hashim Khan and Florence Pharmaceutical Multan chief executive Ehsanur Rehman as prosecution witnesses.
Magistrate Shafqatullah Khan directed the two accused to take some time before recording their statements.
The hearing was adjourned till July 19.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 15th, 2012.