An accountability court in Islamabad has decided to indict Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah in fake accounts case. The court adjourned the hearing till 30 June and announced to indict the chief minister.
On the other hand, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday granted interim bail to former Sindh chief minister Qaim Ali Shah in a case pertaining to money laundering through fake accounts.
The court granted the bail after a division bench comprising Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Babar Sattar heard the former chief minister’s bail before arrest petition. The interim bail is effective until June 8 against Rs200,000 in surety bonds.
During preliminary arguments, Shah’s counsel Barrister Qasim Nawaz told the court that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has issued three call-up notices to his client and against the public office holders and legal persons in connection with an investigation into the alleged fake bank accounts scam, misappropriation of land owned by the government and Pakistan Steel Mills.
The court was requested to declare the notices as unlawful and grant bail till the final decision of the court.
The bench then issued notices to the NAB chairman, investigation officer and others, and directed them to submit a reply. Hearing was adjourned until June 8 (today).
The former chief minister has been named in a report compiled by the joint investigation team tasked with probing the fake accounts case. He was among 172 people named in the report who were to be placed on the Exit Control List.
Notably, the IHC has granted pre-arrest bail to a former provincial energy secretary in connection with the Nooriabad power projects investigation, which is being conducted by the NAB.
An IHC division bench comprising Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani and Justice Babar Sattar granted bail to former Sindh energy secretary Agha Wasif Abbas against surety bonds worth Rs2 million.
A joint investigation team in the fake accounts case had earlier probed him for his alleged involvement in fake bank account scams by extending illegal favour to Technomen Kinetics (Pvt) Ltd (TKL) and other projects of Sindh Nooriabad Power Company (Pvt) Ltd (SNPC) and Sindh Transmission and Dispatch Company (Pvt) Ltd (STDC). The inquiry was later converted into investigation.
The anti-graft watchdog said Abdul Ghani Majeed created a systematic process of whitening black money through 250-megawatt power projects at Nooriabad, which had been established on a public-private partnership basis.
According to NAB, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah being the minister in charge of energy and finance departments was also involved in the process, because he allegedly rendered illegal benefits through his directions and thus played a key role at policy level.