ISLAMABAD: Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani was arrested on Friday by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) after the apex court ordered him to surrender before the anti-graft body.
A three-judge bench, headed by Justice Umar Ata Bandial, heard the post-arrest bail of Pakistan Peoples’ Party central leader in assets beyond known source of income case.
During the proceeding, Justice Mansoor Ali Shah questioned how the petitioner could file post-arrest bail when he has not complied with the Sindh High Court (SHC)’s order. He said that the SHC rejected the bail plea on merit and they cannot hear the matter unless the high court order is implemented.
“You should have been in jail when the high court cancelled the bail. Why didn’t you surrender yourself? Why do we give you special concession?”
The court then ordered the PPP leader to first comply with the order of the SHC and surrender before the NAB, after which his case would be heard next week.
Advocate Amir Naqvi, representing the petitioner submitted that his client has surrendered before the court. Upon that Justice Bandial said he (Durrani) should have surrendered before the NAB.
“The court will not interfere in the NAB’s matter,” he added.
The Court, therefore, dismissed his bail plea and ordered him to surrender before the NAB authorities, who arrested him outside the Supreme Court building.
The High Court on October 15, 2021 had dismissed his pre-arrest bail in embezzlement of funds in the project of MPA hostels in Karachi and illegal appointments and out of turn promotions in the Sindh Assembly.
The SHC has also dismissed his bail in accumulation of assets beyond his known means of income.
The NAB had filed a reference against Siraj Durrani, his brother Agha Masihuddin Khan, wife, son, daughters as well as 13 others before an accountability court in Karachi in 2019 for allegedly accumulating assets worth over Rs1.61 billion through illegal means.
The NAB had arrested the provincial assembly speaker in February 2019 in a hotel in Islamabad for investigation and a few months later filed a reference against him, his brother Agha Masihuddin Khan, and other family members.
The case was adjourned until next week.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021