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HYDERABAD: A division bench of the Sindh High Court Hyderabad circuit on Friday granted interim pre-arrest bail in a sum of Rs500,000 each to Pakistan Peoples Party MNA Pir Noor Mohammad Shah Jeelani and an executive engineer of the highways department, Hashim Channa, in a corruption case.

Barrister Zamir Ghumro filed separate constitutional petitions on behalf of the lawmaker from NA-230 Tharparkar and the highways officer.

Without touching on merits of the case, the court granted them interim pre-arrest bail and directed them to join the investigation/inquiry as and when they were asked to do by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). The bench issued notices to the deputy attorney-general, special NAB prosecutor and Sindh additional advocate-general for Nov 3 for confirmation or otherwise of the bail.

In his petition, MNA Jeelani informed the court that he came across a media report about the Oct 7 NAB press release concerning certain charges against him like corruption, misuse of authority and accumulation of assets beyond known sources of income. He said he tried to offer his cooperation in the investigation but the NAB director-general did not respond. He said he was not aware of the specific charges against him.

The petitioner said he apprehended his arrest at any stage without being provided an opportunity to defend himself. He claimed that the respondents were trying to implicate him in a false case though no notice had so far been issued to him nor had he been called to join an inquiry or record his statement.

The MNA prayed to the court to restrain the respondents from harassing him or implicating him in any case without the high court’s permission.

Four bankers held in Rs680m scam

SUKKUR: NAB officials arrested four officers of the National Bank of Pakistan, Pannu Aqil branch, on charges of having caused Rs680 million loss to national exchequer and produced them in the Sukkur accountability court on Friday.

The court remanded all the accused in jail custody, according to a handout issued by the directorate of information.

The accused Syed Lal Shah (officer grade-II), Bashir Ahmed (grade-III), Kifayatullah (grade-I) and Nusrat Hussain Shah (grade-I) had filed interim bail applications in the Sindh High Court but they were dismissed on Oct 7.

Ex-TMO arrested in graft case

SHIKARPUR: The anti-corruption establishment sleuths arrested former taluka municipal officer (TMO) of Khanpur, Abdul Hafeez Pirzado, after a raid on his residence on Thursday evening.

The ex-TMO was produced in the court of district and sessions judge, Shikarpur, who granted his physical remand for three days to law-enforcers.

The ex-official is accused of appropriating Rs70 million development funds when he was posted in Khanpur in 2013-14.

He was a teacher who used his connections to get himself appointed as TMO on deputation. He was first posted in Garhi Yasin and then in Khanpur.

An FIR was registered against the accused on behalf of state with the permission of the divisional commissioner and chairman of Anti-Corruption Committee-2 after completing investigation process.

Published in Dawn, October 10th, 2015

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