Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – Supreme Court will hear a petition lodged by Joint Investigation Team (JIT) probing assets of Sharif family regarding impediments to investigation in Panama case, Dunya news reported.

JIT head Additional Director General of Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Wajid Zia following the directions of the apex court filed a petition telling the SC about security threats, criticism on investigators, foreign pressure and other issues.

The JIT today will also submit a reply before the top court on a petition submitted by Hussain Nawaz, elder son of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif regarding the photo leak.

Hussain moved the court after photo leak seeking a bar for JIT from recording its proceedings.

Supreme Court

On June 7, the JIT submitted the second inquiry report before the three-judge special bench, headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan with Justice Azmat Saeed Sheikh and Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan.

After reviewing the report, the judges asked the investigation team to file a separate petition on problems being faced by them during investigation.

Justice Ejaz said that they will direct the Attorney General for Pakistan (AGP) to solve the problems faced by JIT.

PML-N’s Concerns

The PML-N leaders have expressed serious concerns regarding the JIT over its members and the approach followed during the investigation.

Earlier, Hussain Nawaz had filed a petition against two members of the JIT, including Security and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), Bilal Rasool and State Bank of Pakistan’s (SBP) Amir Aziz.

He had alleged that Bilal Rasool is the nephew of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Mian Azhar, adding that Bilal frequently speaks against the PML-N federal government despite holding public office.

Regarding Amir Aziz, Hussain said he was part of the investigation team in the Hudaibiya Paper Mills case during the regime of former president Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf. Aziz also threatened the premier’s cousin, Tariq Shafi, while investigating him in the Panama case, Hussain has alleged.

The petition was rejected by the apex court terming the allegations premature.

Nehal Hashmi

On May 28, Nehal Hashmi had delivered an objectionable speech to a gathering on the occasion of Yaum-e-Takbeer during which he threatened those who are investigating the case against Sharif family of consequences.

The Supreme Court had took suo moto notice of the speech and issued contempt of court notice to Hashmi.

Panama Verdict

The Supreme Court of Pakistan had announced the verdict of landmark Panama case on April 20, in which it ordered the formation of a Joint Investigation Team to probe the offshore assets of Sharif family.

Representatives from Intra Services Intelligence, Military Intelligence, State Bank of Pakistan, Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan and National Accountability Bureau are part of the team headed by Wajid Zia of Federal Investigation Agency.

In its judgement, the Supreme Court had also outlined the scope of the proposed JIT, which would probe how the Gulf Steel Mills in UAE came into being, what led to its sale, what happened to its liabilities, where did its sale proceeds end up, how did they reach Jeddah, Qatar and the UK, whether Hussain Nawaz and Hassan Nawaz in view of their ages at the time had the means to possess and purchase the flats, and whether the sudden appearance of the letters of Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jaber Al-Thani of the Qatar was a myth or a reality.

The court also asked how bearer shares translated into the four upscale flats in London, who was the real and beneficial owner of Nielsen Enterprises Limited and Nescoll Limited, how did Hill Metal Establishment come into existence, where did the money for Flagship Investment Limited and other companies set up or taken over by Hassan Nawaz and where did the working capital for such companies come from and where do the huge sums running into millions gifted by Hussain Nawaz to the prime minister drop in from, Dawn News reported.

JIT

FIA Additional Director Wajid Zia is heading the investigation team comprising SBP officer Amer Aziz, SECP Executive Director Bilal Rasool, Balochistan NAB DG Irfan Naeem Mangi, intelligence officials retired Brig Nauman Saeed and Brig Kamran Khurshid.