KARACHI - The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Thursday sought comments from the accused nominated in a reference regarding corrupt practices and abuse of authority for illegally appointing 940 employees in KPT until November 12.

A division bench headed by Justice Iqbal Kolohro conducted hearing on identical applications filed by the Muttahida Quami Movement MPA Javid Hanif, Rauf Akhtar and others, facing trails in national accountability court.  

While submitting his arguments before the bench, Rauf Akhtar’s lawyer said that his client has nothing to do with the charges and allegations leveled by NAB. He said that the prosecution failed to prove any charge against his client in the trail court.

He contended that the NAB also failed to produce any solid evidence against his client that prove any illegal practice of his client.

The court adjourned the hearing with the direction to submit the replies from other suspects.

Earlier, Rashid A Rizvi advocate argued on behalf of Muhammad Javed Hanif and said that his client was contesting general election and due the arrest, he was deprived of free and fear election campaign.

According to the NAB prosecution, Javed Hanif is involved in charges of corruption, corrupt practices and abuse of authority for illegally appointing 940 employees in KPT in connivance with [the MQM’s] Babar Ghauri, the then minister for ports and shipping.

NAB prosecution had stated that the appointments were made in violation of KPT law, rules and regulations “without advertisement of vacancies, competitive process, age criteria, medical examination of appointees and in violation of basic formalities”.

A large number of those appointed had a criminal record in serious cases such as “terrorism, premeditated murder and robbery” and that the illegal appointments resulted in losses to the national exchequer to the tune of Rs2.8 billion, NAB said.

Suspect remanded

into FIA custody

A local court on Thursday remanded a suspect into custody of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) over allegedly involved in cybercrime and sexual harassment.

FIA produced Umar Ghori, allegedly involved in sexually assaulting and blackmailing girls in Karachi through uploading their edited-indecent pictures, before the judicial magistrate (Central).

FIA official informed the court about the initial investigation by submitting that the accused had confessed his involvement in sexual assaulting several girls.

The initial investigation revealed that the suspect admitted his offense during the course of interrogation by stating that he had created two fake Facebook accounts in the name of Angel and Alisha Ghafran, and he had operated such accounts for blackmailing girls through uploading their indecent and edited pictures and videos.

FIA official stated that the suspect has been using social media for such heinous crime and rapped several girls after blackmailing them. He added that more than 1,000 indecent pictures were recovered from his possession. However, the videos recovered from their cellphones revealed his involvement in sexually assaulting girls.

“The accused used to force the innocent girls to make sexual relationship” said FIA official, adding the suspect also admitted that he had rapped more than 20 girls within 2 years.   

The FIA official further said the suspect had initiated friendship with girls then sexually assaulted them and recorded it, then blackmail the girls through those illicit videos.

The investigation officer (IO) of the case requested the court for his custody in order to complete the investigation and to arrest other accused, the court granted his 4-days remand and directed the FIA to submit progress report in the next hearing. 

A day earlier, FIA had arrested the suspect on the complain of a victim in allegations of harassing a innocent girls.