ISLAMABAD – The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Thursday arrested former Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) chairman Syed Asif Hashmi from the Supreme Court.
Hashmi was arrested on the directives of Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar, who thanked the PPP leader for appearing in court. “I am here on the court’s orders,” the ex-ETPB chief told the top judge during Thursday’s hearing on a case related to embezzlement of around Rs1.5 billion in an ETPB deal.
“You are a proclaimed offender in this court,” the chief justice reminded Hashmi, to which the latter was quoted by Dawn as replying: “I have pre-arrest bail in six cases against me.”
Upon being informed that there are actually eight cases against Hashmi, the chief justice told the agency representatives present in court to arrest the former ETPB chairman in the remaining cases.
Hashmi is associated with the Pakistan People’s Party and served as the chairperson of ETPB between 2007 and 2013. After completing his tenure he left for Dubai in April 2016 where was arrested later. Hashmi returned to Pakistan earlier this month to appear in court.
A three-member bench of Supreme Court was dealing with the case that was initiated over the sale of ETPB land worth billions of rupees for peanuts – on which the then-chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry also took suo motu notice.