An accountability court on Wednesday issued a bailable arrest warrant against Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, after the latter failed to comply with a summon issued earlier by the same court.
The reference filed by National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on the directives of the apex court against Ishaq Dar is related to possession of assets beyond his known sources of income.
During the hearing Dar's protocol officer Fazal Dad appeared on behalf of the minister and apprised the court that Dar was unable to appear before the court due to his personal engagements as the minister is out of the country. The protocol officer, however, was unaware of the date of Dar's return.
On this, NAB Prosecutor Sardar Muzaffar appealed the court to issue arrest warrants of the accused.
Subsequently, the judge of the accountability court Mohammad Bashir issued a bailable arrest warrant for Dar, directing the authorities to arrest and produce the minister on September 25. The minister will have to submit a surety bond worth Rs1 million to secure his bail.
The court also warned that non-bailable arrest warrants will be issued on Sep 25, if Dar fails to appear before the court.
The Supreme Court (SC), in its Panama Papers case verdict, had ordered the NAB to investigate those named in a report filed by the Joint Interrogation Team (JIT) who was probing the Panamagate.
The JIT had pointed out an exorbitant increase in Dar's assets from 2008 to 2009. NAB authorities summoned Dar but he failed to appear, arguing that NAB could not summon him following his petition against the Panama case verdict, since the decision under which the bureau was investigating was under review.
The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has reportedly submitted the Dar's tax return data from the last 20 years to NAB. The SECP has also handed over the records of seven companies owned by Dar and his family members to the anti-corruption watchdog.