KARACHI: The Sindh High Court on Tuesday issued notices to the Federal Investigation Agency and others on a petition of Pakistan Peoples Party leader Faryal Talpur seeking quashment of a case pertaining to money laundering.
The petitioner, a sister of former president Asif Ali Zardari, through her lawyer moved the SHC and besides quashment pleaded to declare an order of a trial court about admitting an interim charge sheet as illegal or suspend it.
She submitted that on July 6, the FIA lodged a case under multiple sections of the Pakistan Penal Code, Prevention of Corruption Act and Anti-Money Laundering Act with respect to an occurrence which took place in 2014-15 and alleged that Rs150 million was transferred in the account of Zardari Group.
However, the petitioner contended that the FIA had named 10 persons in the first information report, but the petitioner’s name was not placed as an accused in the FIR.
SC dismisses plea against ejectment from government quarters
Therefore, the FIA summoned Ms Faryal to record her statement and justify the transaction made regarding transfer of Rs150m for being a director of Zardari Group, it maintained and added that since the petitioner was busy in an election campaign she had sought time.
However, the petitioner argued that the FIA filed an interim charge sheet on July 21 in which she was named an absconder despite the fact that she was busy in her constituency and not hiding in any manner.
The counsel for the petitioner contended that the impugned order to admit a charge sheet was passed without an application of mind and requirements of Section 24 of the General Clauses Act while the presiding officer had no jurisdiction to admit the charge sheet.
The lawyer further argued that the petitioner and her brother Asif Zardari were framed in the case with mala fide intention and ulterior motives to malign and defame their reputation and damage them politically ahead of the July 25 general elections, and to help their opponents.
The offences invoked by the prosecution were applicable to the petitioner, the counsel claimed and contended that Ms Faryal’s name appeared with respect to a company which was allegedly a beneficiary and there was no specific allegation against the petitioner.
Impleading the ministry of interior, the petitioner pleaded to declare the July 21 order of the trial court judge about the acceptance of the interim charge sheet as null and void or suspend the same and also asked that the FIR as far as it pertained to the petitioner be quashed.
After a preliminary hearing, a two-judge bench of the SHC headed by Justice Khadim Hussain M. Shaikh observed that subject to the maintainability of the petition, notices be issued to the respondents as well as the federal and provincial law officers for Aug 9.
The FIA had arrested Pakistan Stock Exchange’s former chairman Hussain Lawai and a banker earlier this month for allegedly facilitating the opening of 29 ‘fake’ accounts in Summit Bank, Sindh Bank and United Bank Limited, through which suspicious transactions were made to different companies and also shown 20 beneficiaries, including PPP co-chairman and former president Asif Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur, as absconders in the interim charge sheet.
SC dismisses plea against ejectment
The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed an application seeking restraining order against ejectment from Martin Quarters and other government residential facilities in Karachi.
A two-judge bench of the apex court headed by Justice Mushir Alam directed the estate officer to dispose of the applications of the occupants within 10 days and eject the retired employees or their legal heirs illegally occupying the residential facilities.
The deputy attorney general informed the court that over 4,000 quarters were encroached upon.
The former employees and their families approached the apex court after the Sindh High Court had dismissed over 30 petitions seeking determination of whether the occupancy of Martin Quarters and other government residential facilities was sanctioned under the law.
Published in Dawn, August 1st, 2018