The Supreme Court of Pakistan.—File Photo
ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court dropped a hint on Tuesday that it might take up again the NRO implementation case to look into the outcome of the Swiss case saga.
The reopening of the NRO case may irk President Asif Ali Zardari who was allegedly involved in $60 million graft cases.
This is the same case in which former prime minister Raja Parvez Ashraf had escaped a possible conviction by writing a letter to Swiss authorities in compliance with the apex court directions.
The bombshell was dropped by a three-judge Supreme Court bench hearing illegal appointments of NRO beneficiaries when Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry asked the prosecutor general of National Accountability Bureau whether after the disposal of the illegal appointments case the court might examine the possibilities about bringing back the money lying in Swiss banks because it was public money.
The chief justice said that although the government had written a letter regarding reopening of Swiss cases but it would be necessary to know about the money.
On Feb 9 the Swiss attorney general, in response to the letter written by the government of prime minister Ashraf, had told the law ministry through a communication that the case against President Zardari could not be reopened because it had become time-barred under Swiss laws.
The government of Pakistan had dispatched the letter to Swiss legal authorities in the first week of November last year in line with the Supreme Court order in the famous NRO case seeking revival of the graft case involving President Zardari for allegedly receiving kickbacks in the award of a pre-shipment contract to a Swiss company during the second term of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto in 1994.
The letter was addressed to the Swiss attorney general and had been sent through the Foreign Office and the Pakistan’s embassy in Switzerland.