LAHORE/Islamabad - Claiming that it had reasonable grounds to believe former Punjab chief minister Mian Shehbaz Sharif and his sons Hamza and Salman Shehbaz were involved in ‘offences of corruption and corrupt practices’, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Lahore, on Tuesday issued orders to freeze immovable assets owned by the three in Lahore, Chiniot, Haripur and Abbottabad.

The orders will remain in place for 15 days, during which NAB will file an application in the relevant accountability court for their confirmation.

The NAB issued six orders, each listing separate properties acquired by Shehbaz, Hamza and Salman — all the three accused are nominated in corruption cases being probed by the NAB.

The cases against the father and sons are those of money laundering and assets beyond known sources of income. According to NAB, it had found that Shehbaz acquired several properties — that have now been frozen — in the name of his wives Nusrat Shehbaz and Tehmina Durrani in Lahore, Abbottabad and Haripur. Hamza and Salman also acquired several properties in Lahore and Chiniot, which have now been frozen by the NAB.

Nearly all the properties highlighted in the orders issued by the NAB are located in residential areas.

It may be pointed out that Shehbaz Sharif and son Salman are in London while Hamza in NAB custody. He participated in the recent Punjab Assembly session after PA speaker issued his production orders.

EXECUTIVE BOARD MEETING

NAB’s Executive Board Meeting has given approval to file six corruption references including against former Chairperson Benazir Income Support Programme Farzana Raja. It also decided to start three investigations and 15 inquiries.

NAB Chairman Justice (r) Javed Iqbal chaired the EBM in Islamabad and gave approval to file first corruption reference against Brigadier (r) Sikandar Javeed and others. In this case, the accused were allegedly involved in awarding illegal contract of “Saaf Pani” project and caused loss to national exchequer. The second corruption reference has been approved against PPP senior leader and ex-chairperson BISP Farzana Raja and others over illegal award of advertisement campaign. In this case, the accused persons violated PPRA rules and awarded contract to four advertising agencies and causing Rs1.46 billion loss to national kitty.

The EBM authorised filing reference against CEO UNAICO Private Limited Dean Ganarbajarnay Anderson Atif Kamran and others for inflicting Rs190 million losses. The EBM approved filing another corruption reference against Ali Ahmed Lund and others for illegally employing 13,000 persons in local governments of Sindh, which inflicted losses to national exchequer. The EBM authorised filing yet another reference against Muhammad Ismael Gujjar, former MPA/chairman Quetta Development Authority and others. They have been accused of allotting different welfare plots situated in Satellite Town Quetta to government servants illegally, thus imposing Rs10.42 million loss to national exchequer.

EBM authorised filing corruption reference against Ali Gul Kurd, Director General, Finance, Quetta for having assets unmatched to known sources of income.

EBM also accorded approval for initiating three investigations against Nisar Ahmed Khuro, former food minister Sindh and others, officers/officials of CDA and others, Muhammad Tufail Qazi, former accountant, Pakistan Embassy Sufia and others.

The EBM authorised initiating 15 inquiries against various persons including Shehbaz Sharif, former Chief Minister Punjab, Balighur Rehman, former MNA, Ch Umer Mehmood Advocate, Bahawalpur, officers/officials of Cholistan Development Authority, Nisar Ahmed Khuro, former Food Minister and others, Rana Sanaullah Khan MNA, Agha Siraj Durrani, Speaker  Sindh Assembly, Senator Anwarul Haq, Abdul Rauf Khoso, former Sindh MPA and others, Muhammad Islam Aslam, former MPA Rahim Yar Khan, Muhammad Ikram Aslam, Cholistan Development Authority, and Revenue Department, officers/officials of Liaquatpur and others, Chaurhdy Masood Ahmed, former MPA, Faisal Mukhtar Sheikh, former district Nazim, Multan and others, officials/officers of Capital Administration and Development Division and others, Abdul Razzaq Memon and others, owners of Cantt View Housing Society, Sialkot and others, officers/officials of Roshan Pakistan Solar Programme and others and employees and others of Revenue Department Naushero Feroze and others.

EBM authorised closing inquiries against officers/officials of Messers Civic Centre, Company Private Limited, officials and others of Ministry of Commerce, officers/officials, management and others of Tourism Development Corporation, Punjab, Zafar Ali Leghari, former Minister for Railways and others due to absence of evidence as per law.

EBM authorised transferring the inquiry of transferring Rs1.1 trillion by Pakistanis to Dubai without declaring, to Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) for further action.

NAB Executive Board also authorised sending inquiry against officers and management of Bahawalpur Waste Management Company to Secretary Local Government Punjab for further action.

EBM approved sending inquiry against officials of Workers Welfare Board, Punjab to Board of Revenue for further action as per law. EBM authorised sending inquiry against Dr Hafeezullah, former VC Khairpur Medical University, Peshawar, Dr Fazl-e-Maubood, former Registrar, Khairpur Medical University, Peshawar and others to Governor/Chancellor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for further action.

The board also authorised conducting special inquiry against misappropriation in government funds for Auditor General of Pakistan for special audit.

EMB authorised sending inquiry against officials of Natty MA Town One, Peshawar and others to Chief Secretary, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for further action.

EBM authorised sending investigations against Syed Nasir Ali Shah, former MNA and others to Cantonment Board, Quetta for further action. EBM authorised sending investigations against Irfan Bashir, former MPA Balochistan and others to Anti Corruption, Balochistan for further action.

NAB Chairman said priority of NAB is to eradicate corruption from the country and recover the looted money and take mega corruption cases to logical conclusion.