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Accountability court summons Sharif family in two references filed by NAB

Accountability court summons Sharif family in two references filed by NAB

ISLAMABAD: An accountability court on Thursday summoned deposed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and family members on September 19 in connection with two more corruption references filed against them by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

According to informed sources, ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz and and his son-in-law Capt (R) Safdar have been subpoenaed in line with London flats reference on September 19; the same day on which Sharif and his sons would turn up before the court in Al Aziza Steel Mills and Flagship Company Ltd references.

On Wednesday, the court had served subpoenas to ex-PM Sharif and his sons Hussain and Hassan Nawaz in a reference related to Flagship Company Investment Ltd.

The Flagship Company reference against Sharif and his sons was approved on Tuesday by the anti-graft court, rejecting three others against them, his daughter Maryam Nawaz, son-in-law retired Capt Safdar and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar for containing technical errors.

Three of four references were returned after court registrar Ahmed Mushtaq Qureshi found technical errors in them and directed the NAB to file them after rectifying the errors.

Following the rectification, the references were resubmitted in the court with regard to Sharif family’s flats in a posh London neighborhood, Al-Azizia Steel Mill and Ishaq Dar for owning assets disproportionate to the known source of income.

The anti-graft watchdog had filed four references against members of the Sharif family and the finance minister in compliance with the Supreme Court verdict in the Panamagate case.

Three references were filed under Section 9A of NAB Ordinance 1999 along with its 14 sub-clauses, which is about transferring assets through illegal means.

Section 31A has also been incorporated in a reference against deposed PM’s daughter Maryam Nawaz for impeding the probe into the family’s offshore properties, who could face imprisonment for three years.

The last reference was filed against Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in compliance with the Supreme Court’s landmark verdict in the Panamagate case under Section 14C for possessing assets beyond the known sources of his income.

Sharif family members and Dar could face up to 14 years imprisonment, hefty penalties, and freezing of their properties if the accountability court rules that a violation of mentioned sections of the NAB Ordinance 1999 has taken place as suggested in the report compiled by Panamagate Joint Investigation Team (JIT).

According to informed sources, the accountability court can disqualify the public representatives and impose lifetime ban on contesting elections and holding public offices over violation of NAO’s referred sections.

A five-judge bench of Supreme Court of Pakistan on July 28 announced a judgment in Panamagate case, disqualifying Nawaz Sharif as Prime Minister.

Soon after the SC judgement, the PM House issued a terse statement saying that Nawaz Sharif, despite having reservations on the court verdict, has stepped down from his post as the premier.

Sharif served as prime minister twice in the 1990s before he was ousted in a 1999 coup leading to a decade of exile. He won a third term as prime minister in May 2013 general election.