Court defers Gilani’s indictment in ‘illegal ads’ case

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ISLAMABAD: An accountability court on Tuesday deferred indictment of former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and other accused till August 6 in a case pertaining to the alleged illegal award of government advertisement contracts.

The indictment was delayed as the former prime minister skipped today’s court appearance owing to security concerns.

“I cannot appear before the court due to security reasons today,” Gilani said in his exemption plea filed through his lawyer in the court.

The plea was accepted by the court and was adjourned till August 6 for the indictment.

The former prime minister and six others had been accused in the NAB reference.

The Supreme Court in its order had asked the accountability court to conduct hearings of the case on a daily basis in order to decide it within the stipulated time.

Ex-PM Gilani, former secretary of Information Technology Farooq Awan, former press information officer (PIO) Muhammad Saleem, former Universal Service Fund secretary Syed Hasan Sheikh and other individuals were nominated in the corruption reference.

According to NAB, they allegedly misused their positions to illegally grant an advertising contract in contravention of the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) rules, causing a loss of Rs129.07 million.