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Monday, 30 October 2017

Ishaq Dar in London due to 'ill health', court issues bailable warrants for his arrest

As the trial resumed against Ishaq Dar in a corruption reference filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), the finance minister failed to appear for the hearing in Islamabad's accountability court on Monday, Dawn reported.

Ishaq Dar in London due to 'ill health', court issues bailable warrants for his arrest
Ishaq Dar in London due to 'ill health', court issues bailable warrants for his arrest

The court issued bailable arrest warrants for the minister after rejecting his counsel's application seeking Dar's exemption from appearance in today's hearing. The hearing was adjourned until November 2
Proceedings in the trial could not advance due to Dar's absence, even though prosecution witness Abdul Rehman Gondal, branch manager of a private bank's parliament branch, had appeared in the court with two gunny bags full of documents related to the minister's bank accounts.
At the outset of the hearing, Dar's counsel Khawaja Haris filed an application seeking exemption for the minister's appearance in the court today and adjournment of the hearing until Nov 2. The court initially reserved its decision on the matter but later rejected the application.
Haris stated in the application that Dar, after attending the 16th Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Ministerial Conference in Dushanbe, had travelled to Jeddah. He said the minister fell ill in Jeddah and subsequently had to go to London for medical treatment.
He requested the court to exempt Dar from the hearing as he has to undergo medical check-up in London today.
NAB prosecution opposed the application, urging the court to issue arrest warrants against the minister instead.
The court accepted NAB's appeal and ordered Dar to appear in the court on Nov 2 after issuing his arrest warrants.
The court had indicted Dar last month in a NAB reference for owning assets "beyond his known sources of income”.
At the last hearing, the court had summoned two additional witnesses, Faisal Shahzad and Mohammad Azeem, both from the banking sectors, in today's hearing.

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