News Analysis |
The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has claimed to have tracked down Rs33 billion trail, in a major breakthrough, in a crucial investigation into a much-publicized money laundering case against the mighty Zardari and his aides. A probe into a multi-billion money-laundering scam has reportedly reached a decisive phase. FIA has submitted the report in the Apex Court and requested the top Court to form a joint investigation team (JIT) to probe an ongoing case.
The Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar headed the three-member bench. The Supreme Court questioned the approval of Zardari’s protective bail and enquired about the court which sanctioned it. Besides, the court was apprised with the latest developments in the case regarding all the arrested and under investigation high profile figures including Anwar Majeed, Hussain Lawai, Asif Ali Zardari, and Faryal Talpur.
FIA team also conducted raids at the Omni Group’s sugar mills in Badin and confiscated computer hard-disks and two digital video recorders to assist in the ongoing probe
The hearing of the case is adjourned until September 05. The agency has obtained the record of the Rs 33 billion which was laundered using the fake accounts. FIA has been investigating the 32 people including former President Asif Ali Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur in relation with the money laundering through the fictitious accounts. In a bid to hunt down the cronies, FIA has taken into custody Zardari’s close aide Hussain Lawai and Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed and his son, Abdul Ghani Majeed.
The case against the powerful siblings was lodged in 2015 at the behest of the PML-N government, and is politically motivated, claims PPP. The FIA accuse the PPP chairman and his sister of illegally transferring corruption money through the fake accounts with the assistance of the CEOs of major private banks.
The FIA’s JIT has already discussed the latest developments, and revelations pertaining to the case. Anwar Majeed has not been cooperative, so far, and FIA is certain of the Luwai, and banker Taha Raza’s role in facilitating the registration of 29 fake accounts. These accounts were used for fictitious transactions with multiple companies.
Mr. Khan’s resolve to uproot widespread corruption, and money laundering, especially after his speech has issued a warning to corrupt forces colluding to dismantle Khan’s agenda, under the platform of Grand opposition Alliance.
FIA team also conducted raids at the Omni Group’s sugar mills in Badin and confiscated computer hard-disks and two digital video recorders to assist in the ongoing probe. The alleged culprit’s opened fake accounts in 2013, 2014 and 2015 at some of the private banks.FIA claims that over 20 “benami” accounts were opened to make the transactions worth billions of rupees- the amount that is black money, obtained through corruption and embezzlement.
PPP claims that the registration of money laundering cases against Zardari and his fellow cronies is a witch-hunt. Meanwhile, the emergence of third force and defeat of status quo parties has put Mr.Imran Khan in a commanding position to eradicate the menace of corruption from the motherland. In this regard, PM Khan looks determined and he has laid out the agenda in his a maiden speech and ordered the formation of a Taskforce to eradicate money laundering and deal with the plundered money in Pakistan.
PM Khan has appointed Mirza Shahzad Akbar as the Special Assistant for Accountability and initially took the decision to keep the interior ministry under his wings. However, now, Khan has decided to appoint Shehryar Khan Afridi as minister of state for the interior. But, his quest for the accountability of super-rich politicians and their allies remains on course.
Mr. Khan’s resolve to uproot widespread corruption, and money laundering, especially after his speech has issued a warning to corrupt forces colluding to dismantle Khan’s agenda, under the platform of Grand opposition Alliance. Under Pm Khan’s vision, the task force is specially constituted to coordinate with investigative authorities and foreign countries where money is laundered.