RAWALPINDI: The Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) has started the process for freezing the property of Textile Minister Makhdoom Shahabuddin, Ali Musa Gilani, son of former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, Khushnood Akhtar Lashari, former principal secretary to prime minister, and other accused in the ephedrine case.
According to ANF sources, the investigation team has sought under Section 38 of the Control of Narcotic Substances (CNS) Act details of the assets of the accused from banks, financial institutions and revenue offices. Under Section 31 of the act, all government and private organisations are bound to inform the ANF about their assets.
Under the act, the ANF in the first phase traces movable and immovable property of the accused and their close relatives; in the second phase the assets are attached under court directives; and in the third phase they are confiscated if it is established that they have been acquired as a result of a narcotics deal.
ANF spokesman Col (retd) Akhtar Abbas told Dawn that the tracing and attachment of the property of accused was a routine practice of the force.
He said the investigation team had initiated the process after registration of an FIR and the details of the property would be compiled and submitted to the court.
Abdul Rashid Sheikh, counsel for the minister, said the ANF could not freeze property without the court’s permission. Before issuing an order on an ANF application for freezing the property of the accused, the court must issue notices to them in order to know their version. So far, the ANF had not served any notice to the accused, he added.