ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) will decide the fate of a dozen frontline leaders of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) next month.

A senior NAB official told Dawn on Sunday that most of the complaint verifications involving these PML-N leaders would mature in May after which the bureau would reach a conclusion whether or not investigation against them should be carried out.

“If they are found involved in corruption they can be arrested or face NAB action. Otherwise, complaints against them will be disposed of,” the NAB official said on condition of anonymity.

Among the PML-N leaders who can face NAB investigation are federal ministers Saira Afzal Tarar, Akram Durrani, Riaz Hussain Pirzada and Khawaja Saad Rafique, prime minister’s secretary Fawad Hassan Fawad, ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s son-in-law retired Capt Safdar and Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Najam Sethi.

According to NAB’s modus operandi, a complaint is first sent for complaint verification. Once it is verified it is sent for inquiry and after completion of the inquiry it is sent for investigation and then a reference is made on the basis of investigation.

According to another NAB official, the bureau’s Rawalpindi region has opened a second case against Mr Fawad in which he is accused of constructing a mega mall in the heart of Rawalpindi. The value of the property is said to be over Rs12 billion. The construction of the multi-storey plaza has almost completed.

The complainant in this case has alleged that how a grade-21 officer (Mr Fawad) has managed to construct and own such an expensive property. It has been claimed in the complaint that nine of the 10 floors of the building are owned by Mr Fawad and his brother, who allegedly used their influence for securing financing from JS Bank Limited for the building’s construction.

The complainant claimed that Mr Fawad and his brother got the commercial plot — located opposite the GPO in Sadar — in exchange of a residential plot on Rawalpindi’s Haider Road.

Saira Afzal Tarar has been accused of giving favours to some drugs manufacturing companies in registration of their medicines and fixing of their exorbitant prices.

Riaz Pirzada has been accused of being involved in a number of corrupt practices and irregularities in the affairs of the Sports Division and Pakistan Sports Board.

Akram Durrani has been accused of misusing his powers as minister and being involved in illegal allotment of plots. According to the complaint against him, Mr Durrani has allegedly played a role in allotment of plots owned by DHA Foundation in sectors 1-12 and 1-16 to his near and dear ones and caused losses to the national exchequer.

NAB has sought details from the Federal Board of Revenue about the final outcome of an inquiry against PCB Chairman Sethi in the money-laundering (un-declared assets) case registered against him in 2010-11. The bureau sought the details after completing the complaint verification process in the case.

The complaint against Mr Sethi was filed by former Test cricketer Sarfraz Nawaz who accused the PCB chairman of being involved in money laundering, possessing assets beyond his known sources of income and acquiring overseas properties worth millions of dollars.

NAB is already investigating 179 mega corruption cases involving prominent politicians, industrialists, traders and senior bureaucrats. They included former prime minister Nawaz Sharif (cases under investigation), Punjab Chief Minister and PML-N president Shahbaz Sharif (cases under investigation), former president and Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari (a case under trial), former prime ministers Yousuf Raza Gilani and Raja Pervez Ashraf (cases under trial), former federal minister Dr Asim Hussain (a case under trial and two others under investigation), former prime minister Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain (a case under investigation), former chief minister of Punjab Chaudhry Pervez Elahi (a case under investigation), former chief minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Amir Haider Khan Hoti (a case under investigation), former chief minister of Balochistan Aslam Raesani (an inquiry under progress), former communications minister Arbab Jahangir and his wife Begum Asma Arbab (a case under investigation), MPA Asif Nakai (a case under investigation), MNA Syed Iftikhar Shah (a case under investigation), former minister Murid Kazim (a case under investigation), former chairmen of National Insurance Corporation Limited Ayaz Khan and Javed Akram (a case under trail) and former chairman of Evacuee Trust Property Asif Hashim (a case under inquiry).

Published in Dawn, April 30th, 2018

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