Yesterday, Justice Inam Ali Kalharo in the accountability court at Hyderabad disqualified Makhdoom Jalil-ul-Zaman, son of late PPP leader Makhdoom Amin Fahim, and the Provincial Minister For Revenue, for ten years in a Rs 1.5 crore corruption case. On the other hand, the court granted Makhdoom Jalil-ul-Zaman’s plea bargain and released him.
Judge Kalharo ordered the release of Makhdoom after convicting him under section 25(b) read with section 15 of National Accountability Ordinance 1999. He said the convict would forthwith cease to hold public office, if any, and stand disqualified for a period of 10 years for seeking or being elected, chosen or nominated as member or representative of any public body or any statutory or local authority in service of Pakistan.
The court further added that Makhdoom would also not be granted or allowed any financial facility in the form of any loan or advance from any bank or financial institution owned or controlled by the government for a period of 10 years. It ordered the investigating officer of NAB to release the convict immediately if he was no more required in any other case. The court thereby granted Makhdoom Jalil-ul-Zaman’s plea for a plea bargain of Rs 1.5 crore, after which he submitted a pay order of Rs 1.5 crore to the NAB.
Furthermore, NAB IO Adnan Hafeez Abbasi had filed an application informing the court of the approval of plea bargain application under section 25(b) of NAO 1999 submitted by Makhdoom which had been accepted by director general of NAB Karachi. Judge Kalharo further added that the case pertained to inquiry against Mushtaq Ahmed Shaikh, former additional district accounts officer of Hyderabad and others on charges of accumulation of assets beyond known sources of income.
The inquiry was authorised on Feb 10, 2017, and finally a reference was filed on June 6, 2017, involving corruption of Rs704.778m. The judge revealed that Makhdoom was the beneficiary of ill-gotten money worth Rs15m embezzled by Shaikh and out of Rs15m, he received Rs6m in his own account on Aug 12, 2011 while Rs1.5m was deposited in his wife’s account on April 4, 2015.
Judge Kalhoro further disclosed that Shaikh paid Rs7.5m for purchase of a flat in DHA Karachi Phase-II, which was registered in the name of the brother-in-law of Makhdoom in 2015. Makhdoom submitted a plea for returning Rs15m under section 25(b) of NAO 1999. The reference was being heard in court when the accused agreed to return the illegal amount, he said.
The IO had informed the court when he sought Makhdoom’s remand on Oct 1 that the accused had agreed to return the amount but he failed to do so. Haji Khan Hingorjo said that his client returned the amount last week after his arrest. He showed the statement of Shaikh, insisting that he had extended a Rs10m loan to Makhdoom who was facing financial crisis at that time. An agreement of a land lease was also prepared at that time, he added.
The detailed verdict issued by the court said that Makhdoom was found guilty on submission of plea bargain application. Makhdoom Jalil-ul-Zaman was declared ineligible for 10 years.
Dawn reports that according to the court decision, they will not be eligible for any financial assistance nor will they be able to take any loan from any public or private bank.
It should be noted that Makhdoom Jalil Alzaman was accused of illegally collecting Rs 1.5 crore from former account officer Hyderabad Mushtaq Sheikh. The NAB had arrested Makhdoom Jalil-ul-Zaman on a plea bargain which the court granted and released him but disqualified him from public office for 10 years.