SC bars FIA from summoning Zardari, Faryal Talpur till elections

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FIA summons Zardari, Talpur in siphoning off money case

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Thursday resumed proceedings into fake bank accounts case involving former president Asif Ali Zardari, his sister Faryal Talpur and others.
The PPP chairperson didn’t turn up before the court and he was represented by his counsel Farooq H. Naek.
During the hearing, Chief Justice Saqib Nisar questioned why the names of Mr. Zardari and Ms Talpur were placed on the Exit Control List (ECL) despite no such orders issued from the apex court.
“We’ve not issued any such order that may tarnish somebody’s reputation,” said the CJP. He was of the view that the case should be heard after the elections so that no one could have any apprehensions in this regard.
He also asked for careful revision of the court order to find names that were actually to be placed on the no-fly list. Amid the hearing, Justice Ejazul Hasan said those facing criminal cases were put on the ECL.
In his remarks, chief justice said investigation was yet to be initiated in fake accounts case and the case warrants probe if there are actually some financial irregularities.
He reiterated that the court didn’t order placing Zardari and his sister on the ECL. What we just said that fake accounts were opened in relation to these two figures, he added.
He said, “What we want that Federal Investigation Agency must probe the case and it should be transparent.”
The PPP chairperson’s counsel Farooq H. Naek told the court that Mr. Zardari had no connection with the amount mentioned in the fake accounts case.
The Supreme Court on July 9 had summoned Zardari, his sister Faryal Talpur and others in a case relating to a Rs 35 billion money-laundering scam.
They were served summons a day earlier to appear to record their statement in connection with an ongoing investigation into a case involving transfer of billions of rupees from one of 29 alleged fake accounts to 13 companies, including the one linked to the former president and his sister.
In a statement submitted to the FIA, they stated that they were busy in the party’s election campaign and therefore couldn’t appear. They said they would appear in a first week after the July 25 polls.
On July 10, FIA officials pasted notices at the entrance of Bilawal House and Ms Talpur’s house in Karachi’s DHA, asking the PPP leaders to appear before an investigation team.
The notices, according to the officials, were pasted outside their houses after their staff refused to receive them.

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