Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – An accountability court in Islamabad reserved its verdict on the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) plea to auction assets of the absconding suspect and former finance minister Ishaq Dar, in Pakistan.

During the hearing of the case on Monday, the anti-graft body winded up its arguments on a petition filed a few days ago against the continued absence of Dar, who went to London for medical treatment and did not show up in corruption cases filed against him in line with the Panama Papers verdict.

The court announced that the verdict would be announced on Tuesday.

Last week, NAB had also submitted details of the former finance minister’s assets to the accountability court, that have been seized, however, the accountability court judge, Muhammad Bashir has now reserved the verdict.

During the last hearing, NAB’s special prosecutor Imran Shafiq argued that if reservations are not raised within the given time then the assets can be sold.

“The accused can approach the court within six months after the assets are sold,” he added.

‘Where is Ishaq Dar?’ Supreme Court summons ex-finance minister on May 8

The NAB official further said that so far Dar has expressed no reservations and even if he appears before the court after the assets are sold then he can be granted his rights.

Shafiq also requested the court to issue an order regarding Ishaq Dar’s properties in Islamabad and Lahore which are beyond the court’s jurisdiction.

Pakistan’s former finance minister and member of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz is accused of possessing assets beyond his known source of income.

A reference against the former finance minister, who happens to be an extended family member of Sharif family, was filed by NAB in light of the Supreme Court’s July 28 verdict in the Panama Papers case.

Dar had earlier been declared a proclaimed offender by the accountability court due to his continuous absence from the proceedings; Dar traveled to London in October last year and has not returned.

In November 2017, Dar requested to relieve the duties as a minister, a request which was accepted by then-prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi.