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ISLAMABAD: Accusing Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif of “tempering” with the corruption record pending before the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) against him, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Fawad Chaudhry on Friday demanded the Supreme Court of Pakistan to take notice of it.

Speaking at a presser along with Farrukh Habib, he said that “the imported prime minister of a regime which has been imposed on us” made a failed attempt to steal the record of his corruption from the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

He said that the prime minister against whom graft cases are pending before the FIA is busy in transfer of officer investigating the alleged money laundering cases against him which the apex court should take notice of.

“You’re aware that the very first the imported regime made attempts to steal records from NAB, and now it’s trying to temper the record of graft cases against him [Shehbaz Sharif] pending before the FIA,” he added.

Sharif who has been declared an accused by the FIA, he added, has no right to make transfer and posting at the same institution which is investigating the corruption cases against him.

“We don’t accept this interference by Sharif in the FIA matter as he was supposed to be indicted in a case before he took oath as prime minister. If you keep manipulating the courts like this, we strongly condemn it,” he added.

Speaking on the occasion, Habib said that the party funding cases of the PTI, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) be heard and decided together.

He said that his party welcomes the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP)’s decision to conduct a day-to-day hearing of the PTI party funding case, but the cases of PPP and PML-N should also be taken up for daily hearing.

He questioned the scrutiny committees of the ECP to look into the bank accounts of PTI, PML-N and PPP were formed concurrently in March and April 2018, adding but the scrutiny committees for PML-N and PPP remained dormant and delayed the scrutiny of their bank accounts.

He said that partial justice on part of the ECP would raise several questions on its credibility, adding the commission should treat all the cases of all the political parties without any bias.

He said that the PTI is the only political party which has the record of its 40,000 donors from all over the world, adding we are fully cooperating with the ECP in the foreign funding case.

He said that in contrast, the PML-N and the PPP do not have the record of millions of rupees’ funding, while they also kept dozens of foreign bank accounts undisclosed.

He said that those thinking that the PTI can be banned under this prohibited funding case are living in a fool’s paradise, adding “we are not facing a case on “foreign funding, but prohibited funding”.

Meanwhile, PTI leader Babar Awan said that transfer of an officer of the FIA investigating Rs16 billion corruption case involving an “imported prime minister” is a fit case for suo motu.

Awan said that the “accused in the case” – newly-elected Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif – “transferred an investigation officer against himself which is a worst case of conflict of interest”.

He said that the apex court had cancelled the transfers in Hajj corruption scandals, and had called back all the investigating officers.

“The PTI thinks it’s the perfect case for suo motu,” he tweeted.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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