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October 22, 2011

Timeline of Moonis Elahi case


October 22, 2011

MOONIS Elahi spent seven months (March 17 to October 21) in jail before he was acquitted on Friday in the National Industrial Corporation Limited Scam.
Name of Moonis Elahi started appearing on the case files on January 3, 2011, after his manager’s alleged statement that on behalf of Moonis he had helped men of Mohsin Warriach, one of the main accused in the scam and son of Habibullah Warriach, in opening two bank accounts in Lahore and Mandi Bahauddin.
The FIA had initiated proceedings in NICL scam after a suo motu notice taken by the apex court.
On January 28, 2011, a magisterial court issued arrest warrants for Moonis Elahi and initiated proceedings against Moonis for declaring him Proclaim Offender.
On February, 2, 2011, Additional District and Sessions Judge Yousaf Aujla sought comments from the state on a petition seeking suspension of the magisterial court’s order regarding initiating proceedings against Moonis Ellahi for declaring him Proclaim Offender. Counsel for Moonis Elahi Advocate Amir contended that the FIA authorities concerned misguided the court just for getting arrest warrants for Moonis on January 28.
He said the FIA had summoned Moonis to appear in investigation of NICL scam and a representative of his client had submitted a written reply to the FIA on January 27 wherein it stated that his client was not in Pakistan and would join investigation within seven days but the FIA got arrest warrants on the very next day which was a violation of the law. The counsel pointed out that since FIA had obtained arrest warrants by misguiding the magisterial court, therefore, subsequent proceedings of declaring Moonis as PO was nullity as per law.
On February 23, the same court set aside the order of magisterial court regarding initiating proceedings against Moonis Ellahi to declare him Proclaimed Offender in NICL scam. The court also set aside the order of issuing arrest warrants for Moonis by the same magistrate dated January

On March 3, 2011, the case was shifted to special banking offences court, as the court dismissed a petition of Moonis Ellah’s Manager Muhammad Malik seeking a legal action against the FIA official for allegedly torturing and fabricating Malik’s confessional statement during the course of investigation. Before this, Malik was resiled from his statement before a magistrate.
On March 17, 2011, the Lahore High Court rejected the interim bail application of Mooins. The FIA did not arrest Moonis, as he assured them to produce himself for an arrest and on the same day Moonis went to the FIA building and surrendered.
On March 18, judicial Magistrate Muhammad Eahtasham Sadiq handed over Moonis to Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on three days physical remand.
On March 28, Judicial Magistrate Muhammad Irfan Basra sent Moonis Elahi to jail on a 14-day judicial remand, as his 14-day physical remand expired.
However, the Home Department shifted Moonis to NADRA Rest House, Zarar Shaheed Road, on the directions of Secretary Interior.
The FIA submitted incomplete challan against Moonis on April 14, declaring him guilty of opening bogus accounts.
Finally, the FIA on May 6 managed to submit a complete challan against Moonis.
On May 25, case took a u-turn when eight employees of the Allied Bank Limited (ABL) whom FIA claimed as witnesses in the National Insurance Corporation Limited (NICL) land scam against MoonisElahi recorded their statements before a judicial magistrate and denied making any statement before the FIA.
To start regular proceedings of the trial, the court has summoned eight prosecution witnesses by June 16.
Hearing of the said trial had taken a new turn after the judge of a special court for banking offences Malik Abdul Rasheed on July 5 had refused to hear the case of the NICL land scam after having a heated debate with the counsel for Moonis Elahi. The judge had observed that the counsel tried to influence the court and he could not work under such intimidating circumstances. The judge had referred the case to LHC registrar to place it before the CJ. Later, the case was entrusted to the District and Sessions Judge as per notification issued by the federal government.
On August 9, District and Sessions Judge Mujahid Mustaqeem sought comments from prosecution on an acquittal application filed by Moonis Elahi under 249-A of the CrPC in NICL scam.
On August 18, Additional Director General FIA and head of investigation team of National Insurance Company Limited (NICL) scam Zafar Qureshi told the trial court that challan submitted against Moonis was tempered in his absence.
District and Sessions Judge Mujahid Mustaqeem on Friday August 19 admonished Zafar Qureshi for sending a fax message to the judge seeking adjournment of bail application of two accused of NICL scam till appointment of new prosecutors.
Later, the judge directed the FIA to produce public prosecutor and argue on the application filed by Moonis Elahi for his acquittal in NICL case.
On September 26, the judge dismissed the application submitted by Additional Director FIA Zafar Qureshi, seeking fifteen days extension for submission of complete challan against Moonis Elahi.
On October 8, the FIA appointed a new prosecutor on the case and got directions from the court to argue on acquittal application of Moonis.
District and Sessions Court on October 15, after completion of FIA’s arguments, reserved the verdict by October 21 on acquittal application.
October21, 2011, the same court acquitted Moonis Elahi from all cases established against him by the FIA.

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