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ISLAMABAD: The Accountability Court hearing Thatta water supply case against former president Asif Ali Zardari and others, on Monday, ordered to provide copies of reference to the accused, who was earlier declared a proclaimed offender but recently surrendered before it.

The Accountability Court-II judge, Muhammad Azam Khan, while hearing the case against Zardari, Ejaz Ahmad Khan, and others regarding award of illegal contract of Thatta water supply scheme to Harish & Company issued orders to provide copies of reference to the accused, Minahal Majeed, who recently surrendered before the court and also directed her and other accused to ensure their presence during the next hearing on December 23 to frame charges against her.

National Accountability Bureau (NAB) prosecutor Irfan Bohla and defence counsel Arshad Tabraiz appeared before the court. The court had earlier declared Manahil Majeed along with other three accused including Ali Kamal Majeed, Nimra Majeed, and Saima Majeed, proclaimed offenders over their failure to join the trial in the case.

Zardari and other accused had challenged the same case under the National Accountability (Second Amendment) Ordinance, 2021 and filed acquittal applications before the same court. The court will hear arguments over the acquittal applications on December 16.

The anti-graft body nominated Zardari and 13 other suspects in the supplementary filed in connection with Thatta water supply scam. The bureau had not nominated Zardari in the interim reference and Ashfaq Leghari and incharge Naudero House Nadeem Bhutto in the interim reference.

In the interim reference, the bureau has nominated 13 accused including Ejaz Ahmed Khan, former secretary of Special Initiative Department of Sindh, Hassan Memon, project director/chairman of the procurement committee for the water supply scheme, Thatta, members of the committee namely, Ali Akbar Abro, Aijaz Ahmed Memon, Athar Nawaz Durrani, Abdul Haleem Memon, Mohammad Farrukh Khan, Mohammad Ramzan, Mohammad Siddiq Sulemani, and Zeeshan Hasan Yousaf, a private contractor Harish, CEO Omni Group Khawaja Abdul Ghani Majeed, and Minahal Majeed.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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