Court seeks complete list of Haj scam charges


A local court on Tuesday directed the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to submit a complete list of charges for the Haj scam case in the court at the next hearing, scheduled for August 18. Special Judge Central (SJC) Syed Akhlaq Hussain Shah also issued the poster of an accused, Ahmed Faiz, for not appearing in the court. This was done as part of the process of declaring him a proclaimed offender (PO). During the proceedings, former federal minister for religious affairs Hamid Saeed Kazmi, Haj Joint Secretary Aftab Raja and former Haj director general (DG) Rao Shakeel Ahmed were present in the courtroom. The Lahore Police produced Rao Shakeel before the judge in handcuffs and he was shifted to Adiyala Jail amid tight security when the trial ended. Kazmi told reporters later that he had not brought up the matter on the floor of the National Assembly since his arrest out of respect for the court, but he would now request National Assembly Speaker Dr Fehmida Mirza to provide him a chance to explain his position, just like MNA Anjum Aqeel Khan was allowed to. Kazmi also said that the charges levelled against him by Pakistani Ambassador Umer Khan, Azam Swati and Ali Sher Zai were not competent and that they could therefore not be inserted into the list of charges. He added that he was accused of demanding the money, not receiving it.