SC angry over delays in secret funds’ audit

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The Supreme Court has asked the Attorney General to explain why were the secret funds of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) not being audited.

The three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry resumed hearing in the case regarding secret funds.

The court also sought written reply from former IB DG Col (r) Iqbal Niazi and incumbent IB Director Fareed Jadoon for giving Rs 0.30 million from secret funds in 1998 to journalist Nazir Naji for toppling the Punjab government.

Attorney General Munir A Malik said with the audit of secret funds, many clandestine matters might be unearthed, whose confidentiality was in the national interest. He said when the auditor general held dual nationality, issues of most important nature may be given in the hands of a foreigner.

The chief justice said the time had come to tell the people about the matters in which public money was used.

He said the SC only wanted to prevent wrong use of these funds. In many countries of the world, there are rules and regulations to conduct audit of secret agencies.

The court was told that journalist who was allegedly involved in accepting bribe from secret funds did not appear before the court, to which the CJP said the court would not call a person against whom charges were proven.

Fareed Jadoon, the IB director, said he could not say anything in an open court, however, he was ready to tell some things to the court in an in-camera session.

Iqbal Niazi divulged that when the money was given to Nazir Naji, he was a government servant and working as the high official in the Pakistan Academy of Letters.

The Supreme Court had taken suo motu notice of the issue on a report filed by senior journalist Asad Kharal during the hearing of the Air Marshall Asghar Khan case on March 14, 2012.