The arrest of former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has sent shockwaves throughout the country, with many questioning the role of corruption in Pakistani politics. Khan, who was arrested on Tuesday by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), is being held in custody for his alleged involvement in the Al-Qadir Trust case. This case is related to the illegal acquisition of land and construction for Al-Qadir University, involving the recovery of prime proceeds through the UK’s National Crime Agency.
The Arrest of Imran Khan
Imran Khan, former Pakistani Prime Minister, has been arrested on charges related to the illegal acquisition of land and construction for Al-Qadir University. The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) accused Khan and his wife of accepting Rs5bn and hundreds of kanals of land from Bahria Town in exchange for protecting the real estate firm in a money laundering case. The NAB has been investigating the case for several years and had issued numerous notices to Khan and his wife, but they had not responded to any of them.
Read More: Supporters of Pakistan ex-PM Khan plan march to capital to protest arrest
The NAB has justified Khan’s arrest, stating that it was legal and according to the laws of the agency. The bureau is seeking the maximum physical remand of 14 days from the court. Under new amendments to the National Accountability Ordinance, 1999, the duration of physical remand has been cut from 90 days to 14 days, granted by any court. The case has been praised by some as a necessary step to root out corruption in Pakistan, while others have criticised the bureau for being politically motivated and targeting opposition figures.
Al-Qadir Trust Case
The NAB is pursuing the arrest of Shehzad Akbar, Khan’s former adviser on accountability, who is believed to be a key person in the Al-Qadir University and Trust case. He is accused of misleading the federal cabinet by concealing documents related to the settlement agreement, in which money was received and supposed to be deposited in the national exchequer. The NAB has completed the process to issue a red warrant through Interpol to arrest him.
During the inquiry into the case, the NAB served notices to 21 PTI leaders who were part of the federal cabinet when the summary to deposit the money in the Supreme Court’s account was approved. These members include Ghulam Sarwar Khan, Murad Saeed, Pervez Khattak, Shafqat Mahmood, Shireen Mazari, Ali Zaidi, and Hammad Azhar.
Role of Corruption in Pakistani Politics
The arrest of Imran Khan has once again highlighted the role of corruption in Pakistani politics. Corruption has been a long-standing issue in Pakistan, with many politicians accused of engaging in corrupt practices. This is just one of the many moves made by the NAB in their crackdown on corruption in the country. The NAB, which is a government institution responsible for investigating and prosecuting cases of corruption and financial crimes, has been increasingly active in recent years.Their efforts have resulted in the arrest of numerous high-profile individuals, including politicians, businessmen, and government officials.
Read More: Nationwide protests disrupt traffic and cause chaos in Pakistan
Khan is expected to stay in NAB custody for 4-5 days, with the bureau seeking maximum remand under the new amendments to the National Accountability Ordinance. He will be questioned about his involvement in the case related to Al-Qadir University and Trust. The NAB is also pursuing the arrest of other individuals involved in the case, including Shehzad Akbar, Khan’s former adviser on accountability. But what’s more concerning is the current unrest in protest of Khans arrest.