Sugar mills case: Hamza withdraws acquittal application

Published January 21, 2022
In this file photo, Punjab Assembly Opposition Leader Hamza Shehbaz addresses a press conference in Lahore. ─ DawnNewsTV/File
In this file photo, Punjab Assembly Opposition Leader Hamza Shehbaz addresses a press conference in Lahore. ─ DawnNewsTV/File

LAHORE: Leader of Opposition in Punjab Assembly Hamza Shehbaz on Thursday withdrew his acquittal application earlier filed in the Ramzan Sugar Mills reference saying he did not want to take advantage of the recent amendments made by the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government in the National Accountability Ordinance 1999.

Earlier, Hamza appeared before an accountability court along with his legal team while a one-time exemption from personal appearance was sought on behalf of PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif.

The legal team told the court that Shehbaz went into isolation after being infected with Covid-19.

Speaking to the judge, Hamza said he had complete faith in Allah and the court and that he would be acquitted on merit. He said he wanted to withdraw his acquittal application previously filed invoking amendments made in the law by the government.

The court allowed the request of Hamza and adjourned further hearing till Jan 27.

Speaking to the media, PML-N Deputy Secretary General Ata Tarar said the government had introduced the amendments to the accountability ordinance to give an “NRO” to itself. He said the PML-N would not become part of any NRO and would seek acquittal on merit.

ASHIANA: An accountability court on Thursday reserved verdict on acquittal applications of two co-suspects of Leader of Opposition in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif in the Punjab Ashiana-i-Iqbal Housing Scheme reference.

Bilal Qidwai and Imtiaz Haider, the co-suspects, had filed the applications under section 265-K of CrPC.

The court allowed one exemption from personal appearance to Shehbaz as he had been hit by Covid-19.

Former head of Lahore Development Authority Ahad Khan Cheema and former principal secretary to prime minister Fawad Hassan Fawad are also suspects in the housing scheme reference.

The NAB alleged that suspects caused a huge loss to the national exchequer by awarding the contract of the housing scheme to a company without bidding. The court also adjourned hearing of money laundering reference against Shehbaz and Hamza till Jan 27.

Published in Dawn, January 21st, 2022

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