LAHORE Moonis Elahi, an MPA and son of former Punjab chief minister Pervaiz Elahi was released from Nadra Rest House on Friday evening following his acquittal orders in NICL case by the court of District and Sessions Judge Lahore, Mujahid Mustaqeem Ahmad. After the acquittal orders, hundreds of PML-Q workers and leaders gathered outside the Cantt Rest House of Nadra-9. Chanting slogans and dancing on the beat of drum, they received Monis from the Rest House, declared a sub-jail when FIA took him in its custody in May 2011, after cancellation of his pre-arrest bail in the same case by the LHC. As per details, Moonis was facing charges of receiving Rs 320 million in the NICL scam through two bogus bank accounts. His Manager Abdul Maalick, Rizwan Bhatti and Khalil Ahmad were also co-accused in the case. The banking offence court judge Abdul Rasheed was hearing the NICL case against Moonis and trial proceedings were at final stage when counsels of co-accused Maalik objected to judges order of re-recording his statement in acquittal application hearing against Moonis. The counsels from Moonis and Maalik took plea that the procedure of recording the statement was completed already under sections 342 of CrPC by the court. And on July 5, judge Abdul Rasheed had transferred the case back to Lahore High Court with stance that counsels in NICL case were trying to influence the court. LHC, after taking approval from authority concerned, forwarded the case to District and Sessions Judge Lahore Mujahid Mustaqeem Ahmad with the approval of special court, for taking up the hearing of NICL scam against PML-Q leader Moonis Elahi. It is pertinent to mention here that during trial proceedings in banking court, most of the witnesses especially bank officials had categorically denied recording of their statements against Moonis Elahi with wording that FIA officials got their signatures on plain papers and prepared their fake statements. And in the court of D&SJ Mujahid Mustaqeem, FIA could not present strong evidence or witnesses before the court to get the Moonis as guilty of bagging money of NICL land. District and Sessions Judge Mujahid Mustaqeem during the course of proceedings repeatedly asked FIA officials to present complete challan against Moonis Elahi as FIA Additional Director General (ADG) Zafar Qureshi had written a letter to the court that the Agency wanted to present fresh challan against the accused, Moonis Elahi. But FIA failed to provide strong evidence against Moonis on last hearing, and the Judge Mujahid Mustaqeem Ahmad had reserved the verdict. As per Section 265-K, a court can acquit an accused at any stage of the case if, after hearing the prosecutor and the accused and for reasons to be recorded, it considers that the charges were groundless or that there was no probability of the accused being convicted of any offence. Moonis counsels had informed the court that FIA had been unsuccessful so far in producing fresh challan and therefore, their client could be acquitted on the strong grounds that charges against Moonis were just a political victimisation. The counsels of Moonis had told the present Judge Mujahid Mustaqeem about all the details and debate that was completed in the banking court. On Friday, Judge Mujahid Mustaqeem announcing his judgment said, As sequel of above discussion, to my humble view on the basis of evidence already adduced before the court or any other evidence which can be led during the trial, there is no probability of recording any conviction judgment against the present accused for charge framed against him. The golden principal laid down in celebrated precedents, referred supra, and the dictates of justice demand that the accused be acquitted/set at liberty. Accordingly, the application in hand is accepted and accused Moonis is acquitted u/s 249-A CrPC. Accused is under custody if he is not needed in any other case, be released forthwith.