An accountability court in Islamabad on Tuesday extended Opposition Leader Shahbaz Sharif’s transit remand until November 10.
The National Accountability Court (NAB) produced Shahbaz before Accountability Judge Mohammad Bashir as the transit remand extended by the court on Oct 31 expired today.
The anti-corruption watchdog had requested the court for a further extension in the transit remand until Nov 12, while Shahbaz’s counsel urged that the remand be extended until Nov 10.
During the hearing, the NAB counsel argued that transit remand did not include physical remand.
Shahbaz told the court that NAB officials had, however, already interrogated him during the previous transit remand and added that this should be mentioned in the court’s order sheet.
“It’s been one month but I still have not been told where I committed corruption,” the PML-N president claimed.
Judge Bashir dismissed this argument, saying Shahbaz should mention this before the relevant court.
The court granted an extension in Shahbaz’s transit remand until Nov 10.
Shahbaz’s physical remand will expire on Nov 7 but due to extension in his transit remand, NAB will retain his custody and produce him before the accountability court in Lahore on Nov 10.
In the courtroom, Shahbaz offered his condolences to PML-N leader Abid Sher Ali on his mother’s demise. He also met his brother Nawaz Sharif in Courtroom 2, where the latter had appeared for the hearing of Flagship corruption reference against him.
Allegations against Shahbaz
According to a NAB notice sent to the former Punjab chief minister on January 16, 2018, Shahbaz is accused of ordering the cancellation of award of contract of Ashiana-i-Iqbal to successful bidder Chaudhry Latif and Sons, and engineering the award of the contract to Lahore Casa Developers, a proxy group of Paragon City Private Limited, which resulted in the loss of approximately Rs193 million.
He is also accused of directing the Punjab Land Development Company (PLDC) to assign the Ashiana-i-Iqbal project to the Lahore Development Authority (LDA), resulting in the award of contract to Lahore Casa Developers, causing a loss of Rs715m and the ultimate failure of the project.
NAB has also accused Shahbaz of directing the PLDC to award the consultancy services of the Ashiana-i-Iqbal project to Engineering Consultancy Services Punjab (ECSP) for Rs 192m while the actual cost was supposed to be Rs35m as quoted by Nespak.