ISLAMABAD: The government has written a letter to the United Kingdom authorities, seeking extradition of a son and a son-in-law of Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif.
A government source privy to the development told Dawn on Monday that the letter had been written to the UK government for extradition of PML-N president’s younger son Salman Shahbaz and son-in-law Ali Imran.
Salman Shahbaz is wanted in a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) case related to assets beyond his known sources of income, while Ali Imran is wanted in a case pertaining to Saaf Pani scheme in Punjab.
The source said the letter had been sent by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on NAB’s desire. He said that although Pakistan and the UK had no extradition treaty, they could exchange wanted people under other international obligations.
A member of the federal cabinet, who did not want to be named, said NAB itself could send such a letter directly to any international authority, but in this case the letter was sent by the foreign ministry. He said that under the Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) law being enacted by parliament, the interior ministry would be authorised to deal with such matters and it would write to international bodies directly.
According to media reports, NAB also decided to bring back Salman Shahbaz from the UK through Interpol. In a reported statement, a NAB spokesperson said the bureau would also contact the National Crime Agency (NCA) in the UK and Interpol to bring the opposition leader’s son back.
Salman has been declared a proclaimed offender in the money laundering case against the Sharif family and an accountability court in Lahore has issued his non-bailable arrest warrants. NAB has also decided to request the NCA to provide all possible assistance in deportation of Sulaman as per the law.
The media reports said Ali Imran had failed to appear before NAB in the Saaf Pani case and fled abroad. The anti-corruption watchdog had summoned Ali Imran in Saaf Pani scandal and having assets beyond known sources of income.
His representative Talmeez Nabi had appeared before the bureau and took the stance that Ali Imran was out of the country and, therefore, could not appear before it. He, however, submitted partial record sought by NAB.
NAB had launched a probe against Ali Imran, accusing him of getting Naveed Akram appointed as chief financial officer of Saaf Pani Company in violation of merit. Naveed Akram is also accused of transferring Rs120 million to the account of Ali Imran.
Earlier, the anti-corruption department had declared Ali Imran innocent in the Saaf Pani case. However, the department had failed to submit the record sought by NAB, the media reports said.
Published in Dawn, August 4th, 2020