LAHORE - An accountability court on Tuesday ordered to close a 19-year-old corruption probe against PML-Q leaders Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain and Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi on the request of National Accountability Bureau Lahore.

Punjab Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi and PML-Q chief Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain are allies of the ruling party PTI. Both the leaders had been accused of causing losses to the national exchequer by influencing Lahore Development Authority to exempt more than 21 kanals of land, and 28 plots measuring 10 marlas each, in a private housing society. The anti-corruption authority had opened an inquiry into this case in 2000 after it found that they allegedly purchased the land through their front men Mirza Aslam Baig and Mohammad Nawaz.

During Tuesday’s hearing, the investigation officer presented the findings of the inquiry in the court and pleaded that no evidence could be found to suggest that the Chaudhrys of Gujrat were involved in the purchase of the land. The investigation officer informed the court that the plots were purchased by the Chaudhry brothers’ employees and the PML-Q leaders had no connection to the deals.

Accountability Court Judge Syed Jawadul Hassan conducted the proceedings on NAB plea for closing the inquiry. As the proceedings resumed, an investigation officer appeared before the court and submitted an investigation report of the matter in response to court directions on last hearing. The court was informed that no evidence was found against the Chaudhrys and others.

After recording statement of the official, the court approved the application for closing the inquiry.

The inquiry revealed that plots were bought by an employee of the Chaudhrys, Mirza Aslam, who used their address on the purchase documents. No verbal or written evidence was found against the PML-Q leaders, the application stated.