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January 21, 2018

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NAB loves naming and shaming politicians

ISLAMABAD: The NAB under Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal appears to be enjoying naming and shaming politicians from different political parties for their alleged corruption but avoids uttering a word about scandals involving the retired generals.

The Bureau through its official announcements as well as leaked information gives enough material to media against politicians from different political parties. However, there is no mention in its official announcements about what the Bureau is doing in the high profile corruption scams like NLC, Royal Palm Golf and Country Club involving retired generals.

Even in the case of former dictator General (retd) Pervez Musharraf, the NAB keeps its mum over why like other civilian rulers the ex-military ruler is not being probed for his alleged wrongdoings.

There are certain inquiries pending with the NAB against some retired generals but unlike politicians their cases do not catch the eyes of the accountability body’s top management. During the recent weeks, the NAB opted to revive pending inquiries and cases against key politicians but there is no mention of the cases involving generals. In most of the cases, the NAB also officially announced the names of the politicians like Nawaz Sharif, Shahbaz Sharif, Yusuf Raza Gilani, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Babar Awan etc.

Inquiries against Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain, Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi and the members of their families have also been opened. According to the media reports, asset details of Chaudhrys of Gujrat have also been sought from Excise and Taxation Department from 1985 onward.

A NAB letter addressed to Director General Excise and Taxation Department sought details of vehicles, properties (moveable and immoveable), held, inherited, purchased, sold by Ch Shujaat Hussain, Mrs Kausar Hussain, Shafay Hussain, Salik Hussain, Kharriya Shujaat Hussain, Ch Pervaiz Elahi, Mrs Qaisra Elahi, Moonis Elahi and Rasikh Elahi.

Last month the NAB's Executive Board Meeting chaired by Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal accorded approval to file six references, four inquiries and eleven investigations. All these cases involve politicians and civilian bureaucrats.

In just one sitting, the NAB’s Executive Board Meeting in the last week of December 2017 approved reference or investigations against politicians including Nawaz Sharif, Shahbaz Sharif, Yusuf Raza Gilani, Baber Awan, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Dr Arbab Alamgir, Asma Arbab and some others.

Following the same meeting, the NAB formally issued a press release and announced its decisions ensuring that all important names are made public. Interestingly, in the same meeting the NAB chairman was said to have ordered to complete all inquiries and investigations at the earliest as per law and no case should be delayed for an indefinite period. So far these directions are primarily meant for cases involving politicians and civilian bureaucrats only.

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