Haj corruption case: Hamid Saeed Kazmi freed from Adiala jail

March 22, 2017

Email

The IHC acquitted the former federal minister for religious affairs in the Haj corruption case on March 20.— DawnNews
The IHC acquitted the former federal minister for religious affairs in the Haj corruption case on March 20.— DawnNews

Former federal minister for religious affairs Hamid Saeed Kazmi was freed from Adiala jail on Wednesday following his acquittal in the Haj corruption case by Islamabad High Court (IHC) earlier this week.

While talking to media outside the jail Kazmi said, "The court has termed my prison sentence as void."

Kazmi further said that he was a political prisoner and he is grateful for being freed.

The IHC had acquitted the former federal minister for religious affairs in the Haj corruption case on March 20, along with former director general (DG) of Haj, Rao Shakeel, and former joint secretary religious affairs Aftabul Islam.

The Haj corruption scandal, which rocked the national political scene between 2010 and 2012, had led to the dismissal of both Kazmi and Azam Swati from the federal cabinet.

The minister and other religious affairs officials were accused of hiring a substandard building on exorbitant rent (for housing Pakistani pilgrims in Makkah) and receiving kickbacks in the process.

The former also spent nearly two years in prison over charges of irregularities in the 2009 Haj operation.

Kazmi was subsequently indicted on charges of corruption in the case on May 30, 2012, to which he pleaded not guilty.