The Supreme Court on Monday directed the Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) to file a written complaint to the bench against the interior ministry for not placing the names of the accused in the ephedrine case on the exit control list.
Brigadier Fahim, an investigative officer in the scam, informed a three-judge bench led by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry that the names of the former premier’s son Ali Musa Gilani, former narcotics control secretary Khushnood Lashari and others had not been placed on the ECL, despite several requests sent to the ministry over the last eight months.
Meanwhile, on the petition of former health deputy director general Muhammad Tanveer, the court also sought a written statement from Interior Secretary Khawaja Siddiq Akbar by the next date of hearing for his alleged interference in the investigations into the case.
Tanveer, who is now serving in the ministry of national regulations and services, had pleaded that he was pressurised by the interior secretary to change his statement before the magistrate.
In his defence, the interior secretary denied the allegations saying that instead of pressuring Tanveer, he had helped him on his own request.
Akbar contended that Tanveer had served under him in the health ministry and had come to his office seeking his help and saying that the ANF was pressurising him to record a statement. Tanveer preferred to record a statement before a magistrate under section 164, Akbar said, adding he was looking terrified when he visited his office.
The interior secretary further said that on Tanveer’s request, he had directed his personal staff officer to help him record a statement with a magistrate, saying there was no mala fide intention involved.
The chief justice directed Akbar to place his written statement on record.
Ministry of National Regulations and Services Secretary Imtiaz Inayat Ilahi informed the court that Tanveer was transferred on August 3 to Gilgit-Baltistan, but when he examined his transfer case he found that the orders were issued in haste. The orders were then reversed.
Meanwhile, the Lahore High Court Rawalpindi bench extended the pre-arrest interim bails of Ali Musa Gilani and former health minister Makhdoom Shahabuddin till Aug 13.
The bench delayed the hearing after the ANF prosecutor said the investigation officer was busy before the SC. Ali Musa’s counsel was also absent from the proceedings.
Shahabuddin’s counsel expressed no-confidence in the trial judge of the special court for narcotics control, saying he did not expect a just decision from him.
WITH ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY MUDASSIR RAJA IN RAWALPINDI
Published in The Express Tribune, August 7th, 2012.