Published On: Sun, Jan 19th, 2014
Published in Category: Islamabad

Zardari could not be indicted in NAB references

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ISLAMABAD: The Accountability Court (AC) Islamabad has reserved its decision over former president Asif Ali Zardari’s plea for permanent exemption from appearance before it in NAB references.

The court while issuing notices to the concerned parties on the plea seeking acquittal of Asif Ali Zardari in five National Accountability Bureau (NAB) references adjourned the hearing of case till February, 3.
The AC led by Judge Muhammad Bashir heard Saturday the case for indicting former president in 5 references of NAB including polo ground, IRY gold, Cotecna, SGS and Ursus tractor.

Farooq H Naik appeared in the court on behalf of former president Asif Ali Zardari while prosecutor Akbar Tarrar represented NAB.

Defence Counsel Farooq H Naek filed petition seeking acquittal of former president in all the five references. He argued that no solid evidence is found on the record against his client nor any witness is there against him in these references.

He said Zardari is facing the cases since the last 17 years and all the co-accused in these references have been exonerated. No witness has given any statement against his client despite lapse of such a longer period which can lead to prove allegations against him. Therefore, his client be acquitted due to lack of evidences against him, he prayed.

Naek requested the court to grant permanent exemption to his client from appearance in the court due to security threats. The hearing of the references can also be affected because of gathering and rush of people on occasion of appearance of Zardari in the court, he pleaded. Zardari will appear in the court whenever he is summoned, he added.

NAB prosecutor while opposing the plea seeking exemption for Zardari argued that the hearing of the case will be affected if former president does not appear. Therefore, exemption plea be turned down, he prayed.

On completion of arguments from the counsels of the parties concerned with regard to objections raised by Farooq H Naek in connection with induction, the court will decide if former president can be indicted or otherwise in these five references. However former president has not been indicted so far in these five references.
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