LAHORE                   -              An Accountability Court on Friday handed over Editor-in-Chief of Jang Group Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman (MSR) to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on physical remand till March 25 in plots exemption case.

Accountability Court Judge Ameer Muhammad Khan conducted the case proceedings, wherein the NAB officials also produced Mir Shakil at the start of the proceedings. The NAB investigation officer submitted that the accused was arrested on March 12 after issuance of his arrest warrants by the NAB chairman. He stated that the grounds of the arrest had been provided to him. He submitted that the accused obtained illegal exemption of 54 plots of one-kanal each in Johar Town Lahore, with the connivance of Nawaz Sharif, the then chief minister of Punjab, in violation of the exemption policy. He pleaded with the court for granting 15-day physical remand of the accused for investigation.

However, Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan, on behalf of the accused, opposed the remand request  stating that it was 34-year-old matter. He contended that no offence was made out, as it was a transaction between two parties, besides assailing arrest warrants for the accused.

At this, the court noted that the NAB chairman could issue arrest warrants if sufficient material was available. It also held that the matter needed an inquiry as exemption was granted beyond the 30 per cent quota by the public office holder, and it was not out of the Bureau’s scope merely on the basis of a 34-year-old matter. Subsequently, the court handed over the accused to NAB on 12-day physical remand and ordered for producing him on March 25.  Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman was taken into custody following his appearance in the anti-corruption watchdog’s office in Lahore after he failed to give satisfactory answers during interrogation. He was also grilled by NAB on March 5 earlier.

NAB chairman orders probe over photo leak

Chairman National Accountability Bureau Justice (retired) Javed Iqbal on Friday directed investigations after pictures in custody of Editor-In-Chief of Jang Group Mir Shakil-ur-Rehman went viral on social media. The NAB chief also sought a report within seven days to fix the responsibility.

According to a NAB press release, chairman took strict notice of the pictures and directed Lahore Director General NAB to investigate and present a report so that the responsibility could be fixed.