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Court declares Nawaz absconder in toshakhana case

ISLAMABAD: An Accountability Court (AC) on Wednesday declared former Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif as absconder in a toshakhana vehicles’ reference due to his continuous absence in the case.

The same court, however, indicted former President Asif Ali Zardari and ex-Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani in the same corruption reference.

AC-III Judge Asghar Ali conducted hearing on a toshakhana vehicles reference filed by National Accountability Court (AC).

Asif Ali Zardari, Yousaf Raza Gilani and other co-accused appeared before the court at judicial complex Islamabad.

At the outset of hearing, the court declared Nawaz Sharif as absconder due to constant absence from the proceeding.

The court issued his non-bailable arrest warrants while seeking details of property owned by Nawaz Sharif, within seven days directed NAB to take measures for the arrest of accused staying abroad.

The court indicted the present accused Asif Ali Zardari, Yousaf Raza Gilani and Omni Group’s head Anwar Majeed and his son Abdul Ghani Majeed in the case and read out the charges against them.

The accused, however, denied all charges on the occasion.

Yousaf Raza Gilani arrived at court rostrum and took a stance that the prime minister was authorized to approve the summary and said that NAB had prepared a baseless reference pertaining to misuse of powers.

Being prime minister he had not done anything against the rules, he pleaded.

At this, the judge remarked that the case merits were not under discussion in the court yet. The court directed the NAB to produce its evidence and witnesses against the accused on September 24, while adjourned hearing of the case.

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M M Alam

M. M. Alam is a Pakistan-based working journalist since 1981. Karachi University faculty gold medalist Alam began his career four decades ago by writing for Dawn, Pakistan’s highest circulating English daily. He has worked for region’s leading publications, global aviation periodicals including Rotors (of USA) and vetted New York Times as permanent employee of daily Express Tribune. Alam regularly covers international aviation and defense-related events including Salon Du Bourget (France), Farnborough (United Kingdom), Dubai (UAE). Alam has reported thousands of events and interviewed hundreds of people in Pakistan, UAE, EU, UK and USA. Being Francophone Alam also coordinates with a number of French publications.