Saturday, 25 June 2022

Nawaz Sharif – Panama Leaks: SC examines final report of JIT


ISLAMABAD: The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) has submitted its final report in Supreme Court today. JIT was established by the top court for investigation in Panama Leaks case.

According to media reports, the final draft consists of thousands of pages and was brought to the court in a carton. The JIT team headed by Wajid Zia reached Supreme Court today with its final report.

While answering a question about seeking extra time from the apex court, Zia replied in negative.

Three-member bench headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal heard the proceedings while examining the report. During the proceeding Justice Afzal raised the question of leaked photo of Hussain Nawaz.

“If government want to make a inquiry commission on this issue it can because Supreme Court does not hold jurisdiction in this regard,” Justice Afzal remarked.

The judges rejected government’s application to establish the commission by the court. “The name of person who leaked the photo should be made public by federal government as the court has given authority to it,” remarked the court.

While discussing the record tempering issue in SECP documents, the court asked Attorney General (AG) about it. Upon this AG replied that FIA has asked for a case against SECP Director Zafar Hijazi.

“Hijazi pressurised  subordinates and ordered them to temper the record,” he told the court.

The court ordered to register case against Zafar Hijazi. “He also lied in front of the court,”   the court remarked.

The bench also stated that copies of final report will be given to both parties so they can read it and present their arguments in next hearing. Upon this JIT head Wajid Zia requested the court that chapter 10 of the report should not be publicised because it can be used in investigation in future.

Meanwhile, Maryam Nawaz tweeted that who accuses Sharif family for not submitting should see the evidence trolley of Sharif family’s business since 1960.

Apex court also ordered to present recordings of statements of PML-N leadership including Asif Kirmani, Danyal Aziz and Talal Chaudhary.

Furthermore, court also ordered to present record of advertisements given to different media houses and channels.

The court was adjourned till Monday.

The Joint Investigation team (JIT), constituted on May 5 in the light of the Supreme Court’s April 20 judgment in Panama Papers case, was tasked to ascertain the money trail of the ruling family-owned properties in Park Lane, London and other business dealings abroad.

The apex court had set 60-day deadline for the investigation and repeatedly made it clear in its hearings that the JIT would not be given even a single extra day, yet PM Sharif’s spokesperson Musaddiq Malik in his recent press conference expressed apprehensions that the team could seek an extension.

The team, empowered to summon anyone to investigate money-laundering allegations against Sharif family, will submit its final report before a three-member special implementation bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan and comprising Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed and Justice Ijazul Ahsan.

Over the given 60 days, the investigators headed by FIA Additional DG Wajid Zia, collected evidence and documents related to the business dealings of the family, and recorded the statements of witnesses –seven of them being members of Sharif family.

Even Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was summoned to record his statement, and he became the first serving Chief Executive of the country who appeared before any investigation body.

The other six members of Sharif family who appeared before the JIT included PM’s brother Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif, their cousin Tariq Shafi, Nawaz’ children Hussain Nawaz, Hasan Nawaz and Maryam Nawaz, and Maryam’s husband Captain (r) Safdar.

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