ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Tuesday submitted a report to the accountability court of Islamabad about freezing of the assets of Senate Deputy Chairman Saleem Mandviwala in connection with the fake accounts case.
The anti-corruption watchdog informed the court that it had frozen 3.1 million shares of different companies registered in the name of Mr Mandviwala with the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP).
The accountability court ratified NAB’s report.
As per the report, Mr Mandviwala allegedly bought benami shares in the name of Tariq Mehmood, who is an accused in the fake accounts case. It said Rs30 million was paid for the purchase of these shares from the fake account of A-One International.
NAB also nominated a former managing director of the Pakistan International Airlines as accused in the fake accounts case.
Reacting over the development, Mr Mandviwala issued a statement, which said: “It has been brought to the Senator’s attention that some news channels have been broadcasting NAB propaganda about Senator Mandviwalla. The so-called ‘news’ has been published based entirely on NAB statements or representations and not subject to any investigative or journalistic scrutiny, without even giving the Senator a fair opportunity to present his side of the story. It is unfair and prejudicial; it amounts to intimidation tactics by the NAB authorities and unscrupulous sensationalism by some media outlets.”
Senator Mandviwalla outright rejects this mode of media trial and intimidation campaign by the NAB authorities. The propagated accusations by NAB are baseless, and their mischaracterisation as benami transactions is an act of political victimisation.
Senator Mandviwalla emphatically denied these allegations in toto. All business activities carried out by the senator have been conspicuous and lawful under the laws of the country, according to the statement.
It said the senator would seek justice and challenge these false accusations at all appropriate forums available to him. He would pursue appropriate legal recourse against what the statement called NAB’s unlawful actions.
According to the statement, Mr Mandviwalla fully intends to bring a privilege motion to the Senate regarding the NAB’s nefarious propaganda against him with unproven and baseless accusations.
Published in Dawn, November 25th, 2020