Ashiana Scam: Court extends Shehbaz Sharif's remand till Nov 24

Ashiana Scam: Court extends Shehbaz Sharif's remand till Nov 24

LAHORE: An accountability court extended physical remand of opposition leader in National Assembly Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif till November 24 in Ashiana-e-Iqbal Housing scam.

However, the court rejected National Accountability Bureau's (NAB) request for his physical remand in Ramzan Sugar Mills Case.

Earlier, NAB officials produced Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif before Accountability Court, Judge Syed Najamul Hassan amid strict security on expiry of his transit remand.

NAB prosecutor submitted an investigation report and stated that Shehbaz Sharif attended recent session of National Assembly, therefore, no significant progress could be made in investigations during the remand term.

He pleaded with the court to extend the remand for another 15 days.

He further submitted that shehbaz Sharif has also been arrested in connection with Ramzan Sugar Mills case.

He requested the court for granting 15-day remand in the case.

However, Shehbaz's counsel Amjad Pervaiz opposed the remand request saying that his client appeared before the NAB whenever he was summoned.

He claimed that Shehbaz completely cooperated with the bureau but it failed to provide any solid evidence against him despite remand.

He asked the court to send Shehbaz to jail on judicial remand.

He further opposed physical remand in Ramzan Sugar Mills case.

The law states that a man who has been arrested in one case will be considered arrested in other cases as well," he added.

The court after hearing arguments reserved its verdict on remand request for some time but, later extended the remand for another 14-day in Ashiana-e-Iqbal Housing scam.

However, the court rejected NAB request for physical remand in Ramzan Sugar Mills Case. The court ordered NAB authorities for producing Shehbaz on expiry of remand term.

Strict security arrangements were made inside and outside the court premises on the occasion. Hamza Shehbaz was also present in the court.

It is pertinent to mention here that NAB arrested Shehbaz Sharif on October 5, after he appeared before a NAB combined investigation team in the Saaf Pani corruption case at the accountability watchdog's Lahore office.

Shehbaz was allegedly involved in corruption of Rs 14 billion Ashiana-e-Iqbal Housing Scheme and Rs 4 billion Punjab Saaf Pani Company scams.

He had previously appeared before NAB on a couple of occasions in both the cases and recorded his statement.

Senior bureaucrat Fawad Hassan Fawad and Lahore Development Authority (LDA) former director general Ahad Cheema and others had already been arrested in connection with the housing scam.

The NAB launched an investigation into the scam in November after receiving a number of complaints in this regard.