KARACHI: Pakistan People’s Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said on Wednesday that the National Accountability Bureau is dragging him in Benami (fake) accounts case to induce political engineering.
The PPP chairman was addressing a press conference, where he was accompanied by senior party leaders such as former chief minister Sindh Qaim Ali Shah.
Bilawal Bhutto was reacting to the transfer of fake accounts case to Rawalpindi from Karachi. The FIA is investigating 32 people in relation to money laundering from fictitious accounts, including Asif Zardari and Talpur.
“The transfer of the case is a violation of jurisdiction,” said Bilawal Bhutto, adding that NAB should also hold its officials accountable for their actions.
“In the case, the FIR, accused, accounts, transactions, companies, banks etc all are in Sindh… What is in Rawalpindi?” said Bilawal.
He said that the probe authority should refrain from political engineering.
The PPP chairman said that the party leaders are being dragged in the benami accounts case. “Even if an angel is made the chairman of NAB, he will do political engineering.”
“The law of NAB is the black law,” said the PPP chairman, adding that the institutions made during former military ruler Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf’s era arrested the Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani from Islamabad.
Bilawal said that the post of Speaker Sindh Assembly does not belong to the PPP. “Attack on the Sindh Assembly is unfortunate.”
He said that without any proof Agha Siraj Durrani was arrested and now the officials are searching for evidence.
The PPP chairman said that no court has sent them a notice, but they have been given a sentence without being heard in the corruption references.
“This doesn’t happen in any democracy and civilised country,” said the PPP chairman.
NAB had arrested Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani last month. He was under investigation in three cases pertaining to illegal appointments, accumulating assets beyond means, and embezzlement of funds, was arrested from a private hotel in Islamabad and taken to the NAB office in Rawalpindi.
Bilawal demands removal of three PTI ministers.
Bilawal, while responding to a question about banned organisations, alleged that there are at least three Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf ministers in the Cabinet, who have links to banned organisations.
“I will be forced to take their names if the government does not take action against them. At least three PTI ministers have a record and history when it comes to banned organisations.”
He alleged that one of the ministers publicly met with members of the banned organisations during the election campaign.
Bilawal stated that these ministers believe to this day that if one speaks against these organisations and terrorism, then they are giving a statement against the country.
He said that it is hard to believe that the National Action Plan is being implemented until these ministers, with such mentality, are present in the cabinet.
“These individuals must be immediately be removed from Imran khan’s cabinet. So, the opposition may believe that serious action is being considered against banned organisations,” he said.
The fake accounts case:
The FIA is investigating 32 people in relation to money laundering from fictitious accounts. Zardari’s close aide Hussain Lawai was arrested in July in connection with the probe.
The former president’s other close aide and Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed a close aide and Omni Group chairman and his son, Abdul Ghani, were arrested by FIA in August.
Over 20 ‘benami’ accounts at some private banks were opened in 2013, 2014 and 2015 from where transactions worth billions of rupees were made, according to sources.
The amount, according to FIA sources, is said to be black money gathered from various kickbacks, commissions and bribes.