Graft cases: SHC restrains NAB from arresting CMIT chief

Grants bail-before-arrest to deputy director of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Housing Cell

Our Correspondent June 30, 2015
Grants bail-before-arrest to deputy director of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Housing Cell. PHOTO: EXPRESS

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) has restrained National Accountability Bureau (NAB) officials from arresting the head of Sindh chief minister’s inspection team (CMIT) while granting pre-arrest bail to Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Housing Cell’s deputy director in graft cases.

A division bench, comprising Justices Muhammad Ali Mazhar and Muhammad Iqbal Kalhoro, passed the order while hearing petitions filed by the two officials seeking grant of bail before arrest in graft cases.

Abdus Subhan, a grade 21 officer of the Sindh government, who is currently working as chairman of the CM inquiry and inspection team, had gone to the court apprehending his arrest. He said that the NAB officials were harassing him in connection with a plot of land allotted in Jamshoro when he was a member of the Land Utilisation Department.

He claimed that he had nothing to do with any land transaction and that a detailed reply was submitted to the investigation team of the NAB.

On Monday, his lawyer, Shaukat Hayat pleaded to the court to convert the petition into pre-arrest bail application and grant his client bail.

Assistant Director Muhammad Bilal, who is investigating the case, assured the court that neither any coercive action would be taken against the petitioner nor would he be arrested. But Subhan may be directed to join the investigation, he said.

The judges directed the petitioner to join the investigation in the presence of NAB officials, who were ordered not to arrest him or take any coercive action against him till July 14.

Housing scam

The same court, meanwhile, granted interim bail-before-arrest to Agha Zarar Pathan, the deputy director of the Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Housing Cell in connection with Rs50 million fraud in the low-cost housing scheme.

Pathan claimed that the NAB authorities are calling him for interrogation in the corruption reference against the Fiza Social Welfare Association in the low-cost houses building scheme.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 30th, 2015.