Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Tuesday requested the Supreme Court to form a joint investigation team to probe an ongoing money laundering case.
The FIA put forth the recommendation as it submitted its report regarding the ongoing probe before a bench, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, hearing the money laundering case.
As the hearing began, former president Asif Ali Zardari’s counsel requested that the hearing be postponed. However, the chief justice rejected his request stating that several lawyers were present in court.
The deputy attorney general informed the court that the hearing was fixed to discuss the formation of a JIT and that Zardari and his sister, Faryal Talpur, had been granted protective bail.
To this, the chief justice questioned which court had approved their protective bail.
Further, the Omni Group counsel told the bench that he had prepared a written response to the request for the formation of a JIT. “However, I travelled to Islamabad through a PIA flight and my luggage was taken to Lahore,” he said.
The deputy attorney general then apprised the co urt that Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed and his son, Abdul Ghani, have been arrested.
Further, responding to Justice Nisar’s inquiry about former Pakistan Stock Exchange chairman Hussain Lawai, the deputy attorney general said, “He has been sent on a judicial remand and is in FIA’s custody.”
The court rejected the request to shift Abdul Ghani to a hospital and sought a plea for his medical treatment.
The hearing of the case has been adjourned till September 5.
The FIA is investigating 32 people in relation to money laundering from fictitious accounts, including Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur. Zardari’s close aide Hussain Lawai was arrested last month in connection with the probe.
The former president’s other close aide and Omni Group chairman Anwar Majeed and his son, Abdul Ghani, were also arrested by FIA earlier this month.
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.