ISLAMABAD: An arrest warrant issued against Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in the assets beyond means case filed against him by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) was cancelled by an accountability court Friday morning.
Two weeks back, accountability court judge Mohammad Bashir had suspended till October 7 the arrest warrant — issued on December 11, 2017 — in the assets beyond means case. The warrant was issued after Dar continuously failed to appear before a trial court due to his prolonged stay in London.
The court had, however, said at the last hearing that the warrant would be cancelled permanently if Dar appeared before it in person.
On Friday, the court also directed the minister to submit surety bonds of Rs1 million.
At the outset of the hearing, Dar's lawyer Qazi Misbah asked the court to permanently cancel his client's arrest warrant and the order to confiscate his assets.
The lawyer told the court that it had issued the arrest warrants so Dar appears before the court, adding that they should be cancelled now as the minister is present before the court.
“Did NAB also issue arrest warrants of Ishaq Dar,” judge Bashir asked the anti-corruption watchdog’s prosecutor.
The anti-graft’s body responded in the affirmative but clarified that the warrants were suspended. “What is your point of view now, should the warrants be cancelled or not?” asked the judge.
At this question, the NAB prosecutor supported the cancellation of warrants, adding that they were issued to ensure Dar’s appearance in the case.
The judge then remarked that it will have to indict Dar once again as a supplementary reference has also been filed against him.
To this, Dar’s lawyer stated that they will give arguments on the supplementary reference.
Before adjourning the case till October 12, the court issued notices to NAB over the application filed against the confiscation of Dar’s property and permanent exemption from appearance.
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