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Monday January 30, 2023

Court sends PTI’s Zaman on 14-day judicial remand

October 11, 2022

LAHORE: Refusing to grant further physical custody of PTI leader Hamid Zaman to Federal Investigation Agency, the magisterial court on Monday sent Zaman to jail on 14-day judicial remand.

The court observed the record shows that Zaman did not commit any fraud in the funds nor he forged the documents or defrauded the state. The FIA produced Zaman before the court after the expiry of his physical remand and sought an extension in his physical remand for further investigation. The FIA stated they have to examine the email IDs of the accused.

Zaman’s counsel argued before the court that all the documentary evidence in the case was present and the agency needed to give reasons for further remand. The counsel argued it is necessary to establish his client’s link with a financial instrument such as a cheque to implicate him in the case. However, FIA officials have yet to determine the charge. He argued the FIA is mentioning an email but not giving any details.

In the counterargument, the FIA prosecutor stated that the email was sent by Umar Khan to Hamid Zaman in February 2013, and everything was written in it. The prosecutor alleged the PTI created Insaf Trust to withdraw funds and use them in the elections 2013. He said the trust was created for withdrawing funds in violation of the law and it carried the home address of Hamid Zaman.

Zaman’s counsel said the FIA is asking for laptops and devices for the forensic investigation, adding, “Don’t ask things against the fundamental rights.” The court after hearing arguments of both parties refused to grant further custody of the accused to the FIA.

The court in its judgment observed that the funds were transferred to “Insaf Trust” from where the money was shifted to Communication Spot and M Group for political campaigns. Zaman has been arrested on the charges of forgery, fraud, prohibited funding and assistance in crime, observed the judge.

The record shows Zaman did not commit any fraud in the funds, remarked the magistrate, adding that neither the suspect forged the documents nor defrauded the state or the ECP. In addition, there were no signatures of the suspect on the cheques received by the Insaf Trust or given to the marketing agencies, the magistrate remarked. Zaman was not found involved in the case even under the testimonies recorded under Section 161, the judicial magistrate observed.

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