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ISLAMABAD: An accountability court, hearing Thatta water supply case against former president Asif Ali Zardari and others on Saturday deferred announcement of its reserved judgment over the acquittal application filed by an accused under the National Accountability (second amendment) Ordinance 2021.

The accountability court-II judge, Muhammad Azam Khan, while hearing the case regarding the award of illegal contract of Thatta water supply to Harish against Zardari and others, deferred announcement of its reserved judgment on the acquittal application of the co-accused Manahil Majeed after her counsel Arshad Tabraiz submitted his reply in response to the reply submitted by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) after the acquittal application filed by the accused was rejected by the Islamabad High Court (IHC).

During the hearing, the defence counsel requested the court to allow him to argue regarding its reply filed before it during the next hearing. The court approved his request and adjourned the hearing till May 25.

Advocate Hafiz Ijaz Mehmood, prosecutor National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Furqan Hameed investigation officer (IO) NAB, associate of Farooq H Naek, counsel for Zardari, and defence counsel Arshad Tabraiz appeared before the court.

At the start of the hearing, Zardari’s counsel’s associate filed an application seeking one-day exemption for his client to appear before it which the court approved.

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 in-charge 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 Manahil Majeed.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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