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Who wants to blow up NAB headquarters for doing its job: asks Accountability Chief


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The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Chairman retired Justice Javed Iqbal says that the watchdog is receiving threats that its headquarters would be blown up. The Chairman NAB told the officials and public during a visit to bureau office in Lahore. He also made it clear that these threats have been received because the NAB has started investigations in mega corruption scandals.

He, however, explicitly stated that these threats cannot deter his resolve to end malpractice across the country. “Our struggle against corruption and malpractices will continue,” stated the NAB Chairman.

Later on, the caretaker Interior Minister took a notice of the revelations made by the chairman NAB and issued directives to increase the security deployment at the NAB headquarters in the Federal Capital. The Inspector General Police of Islamabad immediately handed over the security of NAB offices to police commandos.

Interestingly, among the 179 cases of mega corruption, 22 related to financial corruption, 27 to housing societies and 71 pertained to corruption and misuse of authority by high-ranking public officials.

These tactics by the influential people to pressurize such institutions and individuals are not new in Pakistan. Police and other institutions have badly been politicized in various parts of the country to serve the vested political interests of the ruling elite.

The matter started when the Supreme Court of Pakistan ordered  NAB, to conclude all investigations into these mega cases by Dec 31, 2015 on July 7, 2015. The court also expressed displeasure over the cases pending for over a decade with no real progress. Later on, NAB  sought an extension of three months. The SC, however, instructed to present a final report to the court by the termination of the requested extension on March 31, 2016.

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179 Mega Corruption cases, Politicians under Scrutiny

As the new Chairman assumed the office, the prosecution division of the bureau was immediately ordered to finalise all 179 mega corruption investigations as soon as possible. It was revealed during a performance review meeting of NAB chaired by Justice Iqbal that investigations into 101 cases had been concluded, and references had been filed in the respective accountability courts, where the corruption cases would be adjudicated in accordance with the law.

Moreover, currently the NAB is working on 19 inquiries and 23 investigations, while 36 cases have already been disposed of.

These tactics by the influential people to pressurize such institutions and individuals are not new in Pakistan. Police and other institutions have badly been politicized in various parts of the country to serve the vested political interests of the ruling elite.

The 179 mega corruption cases were lodged against the industrialists, traders, senior bureaucrats and prominent politicians, including the ex-PM Nawaz Sharif (case under investigation), Punjab Chief Minster Shahbaz Sharif (case under investigation), ex-President Asif Ali Zardari (case under trial), former Prime Ministers Yousuf Raza Gilani and Raja Pervez Ashraf (cases under trial), former Federal Minister Dr Asim Hussain (a case under trial and two others under investigation), former prime minister Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain (case under investigation), ex-CM Punjab Chaudhry Pervez Elahi (case under investigation), former Chief Minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Amir Haider Khan Hoti (case under investigation), former Chief Minister of Balochistan Aslam Raisani, (inquiry under progress) former Communication Minister Arbab Jahangir and his wife Begum Asma Arbab (case under investigation), MPA Asif Nakai (case under investigation), MNA Syed Iftikhar Shah (case under investigation), former Minister Murid Kazim (case under investigation), former Chairmen of NICL Ayaz Khan and Javed Akram (case under trail) and former Chairman of Evacuee Trust Property Asif Hashim (case under inquiry).

Read more: NAB chairman’s statement against corruption is making sense

Interestingly, among the 179 cases of mega corruption, 22 related to financial corruption, 27 to housing societies and 71 pertained to corruption and misuse of authority by high-ranking public officials.

The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz is also not happy with what the NAB is doing at the moment. The NAB’s inquiry and arrest of a senior bureaucrat Ahed Cheema from Punjab not only displeased the party but it also triggered an anti-NAB stance by the senior leaders of PML-N like Rana Sana Ullah. But the NAB Chairman is determined to deal with all mega corruption cases as soon as possible without being feared or pressurized.

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