ISLAMABAD - The National Accountability Bureau has formally approved supplementary references against ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif and others in Azizia Steel Mills, Hill Metals, Flagship Investment and Avenfield properties corruption cases.

The NAB executive board meeting was chaired by the anti-graft body chief Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal and it also gave an approval to file a supplementary reference against Senator Ishaq Dar in the assets beyond the known source of income case.

NAB officials said that the Azizia Steel Mills and Flagship Investment supplementary references have already been filed in the accountability court by the NAB. The board only gave approval to these references to avoid legal complications.

On a complaint of the State Bank of Pakistan, the bureau authorised the third inquiry against owners of M/s Chaudhry Sugar Mill Nawaz Sharif, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, Kulsoom Nawaz, Hamza Shahbaz and Maryam Nawaz in the assets beyond known sources case. On another SBP compliant regarding the dubious transaction, the bureau authorised another inquiry against Shahbaz Sharif, Fazal Dad Abbas Masood Anwar and others.

The board also authorised an inquiry against Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa officials on the misuse of the official helicopter by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan. The second inquiry was approved against KP Chief Minister Pervaiz Khattak, the KP chief secretary and others on charges of illegal allotment of 275 acres land to a private firm in Malam Jaba.

The bureau also authorised an inquiry against Information Minister Anusha Rehman, Senator Dar and former chairman Pakistan Telecommunication Authority Dr Ismail Shah on charges of awarding the contract of the next generation mobile service illegally. The NAB also decided to start the fourth inquiry against former chairman Lahore Development Authority Ahad Cheema on charges of the misuse of authority and corruption allegations. The fifth inquiry was authorised against the management of Paragon City Housing Society Private Ltd and others over allegations of corruption and cheating the general public.

The sixth inquiry was authorised against Senator Usman Saifullah, Anwar Saifullah, Saleem Saifullah and others in the case of 34 offshore companies revealed in the Panama Papers scandal. The seventh inquiry was ordered against Zulifqar Bukhari for holding 15 offshore companies and possessing assets beyond known sources of income.

The NAB also authorised the eighth inquiry against the management of Rawalpindi Railway Cooperative Housing Society and others on charges of illegal occupation of land, causing a loss of millions of rupees to the national exchequer.

The ninth inquiry was authorized against officials of the Civil Aviation Authority and others on charges of giving a contract to M/s Hasaas Construction Company illegally, causing a loss of Rs664 million to the national treasury. The tenth inquiry was launched against the management of the National Testing Service and the health department of Punjab and others on charges of anomalies in entry tests conducted by the entity.

The NAB ordered the 12th inquiry against Bashir Dawood, Maryam Dawood and others for having an offshore company. The 13th inquiry was authorized against former managing director Port Qasim Authority Abdul Sattar Dairo on the allegation of holding an offshore company.

The 14 inquiry was authorised against officials of the Sui Southern Gas Company, the Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) and others on charges of severing the gas connection of PSM illegally and causing a loss of millions of rupees to the national exchequer. The 15th inquiry was ordered against the management of PSM on charges of corruption in workers’ provident and gratuity funds.

The NAB also authorised an investigation against KDA officials in a case of transfer the status of welfare plots as commercial and residential illegally, causing a loss of millions of rupees to the exchequer. The second investigation was authorized against former director general Quetta Development Authority Noor Ahmed Pir Kani and others on charges of the misuse of authority and illegal allotment of government plots to Chiltan Housing Society. The NAB chief directed all regional bureaus to complete all inquiries and investigations within the given timeframe without any pressure.