KARACHI: An accountability court on Thursday reissued warrants for the arrest of Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani and 10 co-accused in a National Accountability reference pertaining to his Rs1.61bn assets and alleged corruption.
The suspects had purportedly been absconding since revocation of their pre-arrest bail by the Sindh High Court on October 13.
On Feb 20, 2020, Mr Durrani was arrested by NAB at an Islamabad hotel for investigation into his movable and immovable assets allegedly acquired beyond his known sources of income, making 352 illegal appointments and embezzlement of public funds in the construction of MPAs’ Hostel and the new Sindh Assembly building, as well as the appointment of project directors for these schemes.
Besides Mr Durrani, his spouse, children, brother and some associates have been nominated in the reference.
On Thursday, the mater came up before Accountability Court-III Judge Dr Sher Bano Karim, when three of the accused on bail appeared in the court.
However, Speaker Durrani and his 10 co-accused – Shakeel Ahmed Soomro, Mitha Khan, Tufail Ahmed Shah, Zulfiqar Ali Dahar, Munawwar Ali, Ghulam Murtaza, Gulbahar Lohar Baloch, Syed Muhammad Shah, Muhammad Irfan and Shamshad Khatoon – did not turn up.
The defence counsel moved applications stating that since the SHC had recalled pre-arrest bail of Agha Siraj and the co-accused on Oct 13, all of them had subsequently approached Supreme Court to seek a bail before arrest. The counsel requested the judge to condone their clients from personal appearance till the next date.
Published in Dawn, November 26th, 2021