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Thursday July 18, 2024

Court approves Hasan, Hussain’s bail in NAB references

On request of defendants’ counsel, court adjourns further hearing of case till tomorrow

By Arfa Feroz Zake
March 14, 2024
Hussain Nawaz (left) and Hasan Nawaz, sons of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif. — AFP/File
Hussain Nawaz (left) and Hasan Nawaz, sons of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: An accountability court in Islamabad on Thursday cancelled the perpetual arrest warrants and fugitive status of Hasan and Hussain Nawaz in Al-Azizia Steel Mill, Avenfield apartments and Flagship references.

The court approved the siblings’ bail in exchange for Rs50,000 in the three cases. They had to mark their attendance before the accountability court today to get their perpetual arrest warrants suspended, as they were given relief by the court till March 14.

On the request of the defendant’s counsel, Qazi Misbah, the court adjourned further hearing of the case till Friday (tomorrow).

Upon petitions filed by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s sons for acquittal, the accountability court issued a notice to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

Whereas, Misbah filed a petition for appointment of his clients’ pleader saying the petition regarding the pleader was being lodged for security reasons. Upon which, Rana Irfan was appointed as their pleader.

Presenting arguments, Misbah said, he had pleaded to suspend his clients’ perpetual arrest warrants on previous hearing. Since the suspects had surrendered themselves as per the court’s condition, their warrants should be cancelled, he said.

Accountability court judge Nasir Javed inquired if Hasan and Hussain were nominated in the three references. The counsel replied in affirmative saying they were nominated in the cases as co-accused. He added the trail court had vindicated them in the Flagship reference. While, he said, all the accused were acquitted by the high court in the Al-Azizia and Avenfield references with the exception of his clients, who weren't able to appear before the court.

The judge asked if the suspects would leave the country soon. The lawyer said for the time being they were in the country. Following that, the court adjourned the hearing till tomorrow.

During their plea's March 7 hearing, Misbah had said there were five accused in the Avenfield reference and the Islamabad High Court acquitted three of them. Arif, a NAB prosecutor, said the purpose of the arrest warrant was to bring the accused to court, insisting that both brothers should be given a chance to appear before the accountability court.

Political vengeance launched against us in 1999, says Hussain

In an informal discussion with journalists in the Islamabad Judicial Complex, Hussain said he was a Pakistani citizen and never refused to accept it. Whatever happened to them was evident before everyone, he said adding that the political vengeance against them was launched on October 12, 1999, when they were exiled “without any case”.

Distancing himself and his brother from any government, Hussain said: “Hasan and I have no association with any government. Character assassination on personal matters should be ended and every person should get a transparent trial.”