The Islamabad Accountability Court (IAC) has rejected the plea of former president and PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari seeking exemption from attendance in the ToshaKhana reference and issued bailable arrest warrants against him
During the last hearing, the court had issued non-bailable arrest warrants for Nawaz Sharif for his persistent absence and directed the Foreign Ministry to comply with the court’s orders through the Pakistan High Commission in London.
Judge Asghar Ali of the Islamabad Accountability Court on Tuesday heard the Tosha Khana reference. Report submitted.
The court said that accused Nawaz Sharif was not appearing in the court during the continuous hearing and no lawyer was appearing in the court on his behalf.
In this reference, another accused, former President Asif Ali Zardari, was asked about his absence in court, then his lawyer Farooq H Naik told the court that his client was unwell.
Farooq H Naik said that his clients have been facing cases in various courts for the last 20 years and they are not afraid to appear in the courts.
He also presented Asif Ali Zardari’s medical report in the court and said that the Islamabad High Court had also granted bail in a case due to illness.
The accountability court judge asked the accused’s lawyer whether his clients were being treated in a government hospital or in a private hospital, to which Farooq H Naik said the former president was being treated in a private hospital these days.
The court expressed reservations over the report of the accused regarding his illness and said that his report was not satisfactory.
When the accused filed an application for exemption from attendance, the NAB deputy prosecutor objected and said that if Asif Zardari’s appearance caused a rush, it was up to the administration to control it. He said no concessions should be made to the former president and his non-bailable warrants should be issued.
Farooq H Naik said that he is a senior lawyer and is giving a statement in the court that his client Asif Zardari will appear in the court at the next hearing, on which Judge Asghar Ali said that he is a bailable warrant for the accused Asif Ali Zardari. Arrest warrants have been issued which will not be returned.
The reference hearing was adjourned until August 17.