IHC stays anti-graft proceedings against Dar till Jan 17

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ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday barred the accountability court hearing a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) reference filed against former finance minister Ishaq Dar on charges of having assets beyond his known sources of income from holding proceedings in the case till January 17, 2018.

Hearing Dar’s petition against the anti-graft court’s issuance of non-bailable arrest warrants against him and an order declaring him a proclaimed offender, a two-member IHC bench granted a stay on the accountability court’s proceedings against the PML-N leader till Jan 17.

Justice Athar Minullah and Justice Mian Gul Hasan Aurengzeb heard the petitions.

On December 14, the accountability court had declared Dar a proclaimed offender for his continued absence from proceedings in a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) reference filed against him on charges of having assets beyond his known sources of income.

The court had also issued a final warning to the guarantor of the former finance minister to produce him in court or forfeit surety bonds worth Rs5 million.

Later, the anti-graft court had directed the NAB to submit its report pertaining to confiscation of properties of Dar and his guarantor.

Dar had subsequently moved the IHC against the issuance of non-bailable arrest warrants for him and an order declaring him a proclaimed offender.

Earlier on Tuesday, IHC had granted a 24-hour stay on the accountability court’s judgement of confiscating properties of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Ishaq Dar’s guarantor, Ahmed Ali Qadoosi.

The PML-N leader is currently receiving medical treatment in London.

According to a notification issued by the accountability department, Dar is suffering from no such ailment that cannot be treated in Pakistan.

On July 28, a five-member Supreme Court bench had ordered NAB to file three references against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and one against Dar, on petitions filed by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s Imran Khan, Jamaat-e-Islami’s Sirajul Haq and Awami Muslim League’s Sheikh Rashid Ahmed.

In its reference against the finance minister, NAB alleged that “the accused has acquired assets and pecuniary interests/resources in his own name and/or in the name of his dependants of an approximate amount of Rs831.678 million (approx)”.

The reference alleged that the assets were “disproportionate to his known sources of income for which he could not reasonably account for”.

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