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Tuesday August 16, 2022

Miftah asks NBP to withdraw appeal against Riba verdict

Miftah says he has instructed the NBP to withdraw its appeal from the Supreme Court against the Federal Shariat Court's recent verdict on interest

June 29, 2022
Finance Minister Miftah Ismail. Photo: The News/File
Finance Minister Miftah Ismail. Photo: The News/File 

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Miftah Ismail says he has instructed the National Bank of Pakistan to withdraw its appeal from the Supreme Court against the Federal Shariat Court's recent verdict on interest (Riba).

However, no decision has been taken as yet with regard to the State Bank of Pakistan, which has also challenged the FSC decision against Riba in the SC. “I have instructed the NBP to take its petition back,” says Miftah.

About the SBP, he says that he will discuss the issue with them. Media reports suggest that besides the SBP and NBP, some of the private banks have also approached the apex court against the FSC decision.

This action on the part of the government and private banks has invited strong criticism from leading religious scholars of the country. The Jamaat-i-Islami has also voiced its anger and is running a campaign to boycott the banks that have challenged the FSC decision.

JUIF’s federal minister Maulana Asad Mehmood, in his speech in the National Assembly Monday, warned the government that the JUIF would not accept any such move on the part of the government banks.

Meanwhile, the Council of Islamic Ideology Tuesday issued a press release to state that the council has already written a letter to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, seeking his intervention to get the SBP appeal in the SC withdrawn.

The CII suggested to the prime minister to constitute a task force comprising government functionaries concerned, bankers/economists (both Islamic and conventional) and legal experts. The task force, the CII said, should listen to the reservations of the State Bank of Pakistan and other banks about the FSC verdict against Riba for smooth implementation of the court order. Being a constitutional body, the CII assured the PM that it will facilitate the Task Force to perform its job in a meaningful manner. Last month, the CII had also approached the heads of different banks, both private and public, with the request not to file an appeal in the SC against the FSC decision.

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