| Investigation officer tells court Shehbaz Sharif refused to answer questions during interrogation 

| Shehbaz’s daughter Javeria Ali exempted from personal appearance

LAHORE    -   The Accountability Court on Tuesday remanded Opposition Leader in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif in National Accountability Bureau's (NAB) custody on 14-day physical remand in money laundering and assets beyond means case.

Accountability Court Judge Syed Jawadul Hassan conducted the case proceedings, wherein NAB officials produced Shehbaz Sharif, who was arrested on Monday from the Lahore High Court premises after a division bench dismissed his bail petition.

Shehbaz Sharif submitted that he would himself argue in the case. He submitted that he transferred all inherited family property to his children on return from exile. He further submitted that he never misused his office and did not cause any loss to national exchequer. He submitted that the business of his children suffered loss due to his decisions but he did not cause loss to sugarcane farmers.  

Shehbaz Sharif submitted that he saved billions of rupees in various projects while responding to a court query. At this stage, the NAB prosecution team requested the court to grant 15-day physical remand of Shehbaz Sharif for investigations. The investigation officer told the court that Shehbaz Sharif refused to answer questions asked to him last night.

Subsequently, the court reserved verdict on NAB plea for physical remand and, after a short time, remanded Shehbaz Sharif in NAB custody for 14-days while allowing the plea. The court directed for producing Shehbaz Sharif on expiry of the remand term, October 13, and also directed for recording his statement.

Earlier, the court allowed Javeria Ali, daughter of Shehbaz Sharif, to leave after marking her attendance. The court also allowed Javeria's application for permanent exemption from personal appearance and directed Advocate Nauman to appear on her behalf.

The jail authorities did not produce Hamza Shehbaz during Tuesday's proceedings. The jail doctor told the court that Hamza Shehbaz was still in isolation and he would be tested again for coronavirus. A number of PML-N leaders and workers were present inside and outside the court premises whereas strict security arrangements were made on the occasion. A heavy contingent of police was deployed around the court premises. The NAB had filed a reference against Shehbaz Sharif family before the accountability court in the money laundering case.

Shehbaz Sharif, Hamza Shehbaz, Salman Shehbaz, Nusrat Shehbaz, Rabia Imran, Javeria Ali, Nisar Ahmad Ali, Ahmad Khan, Syed Muhammad Tahir Naqvi, Qasim Qayyum, Rashid, Masroor Anwar, Muhammad Usman, Fazal Dad, Muhammad Shoaib Qamar, Haroon Yousaf Zai are named accused in the reference comprising of 55 volumes.

According to the reference, the whole family committed massive money laundering of Rs 7 billion. Yasir Mushtaq, Mushtaq Ahmad, Shahid Rafique and Aftab were made approvers in the reference.