Supreme Court hears Imran Khan’s plea against NAB law amends

ISLAMABAD: Islam orders accountability of government officials, Imran Khan’s lawyer said in the hearing of petition against amendments in the NAB law, ARY News reported on Tuesday.

A special three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Umar Ata Bandial, heard the challenge to amendments in the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) law.

“In Islam the ruler is responsible for any injustice in country,” Khawaja Haris advocate argued.

“No political party or citizen, except Imran Khan, has challenged the amendments in the NAB law,” Justice Mansoor Ali Shah said. “Why only Imran Khan has affected from NAB amendments, in the 250 million population of the country,” Justice Shah questioned.

“The court should dismiss the petition against the NAB amends, if it has no substantial grounds,” counsel said.

“The court has not been told yet about the fundamental rights affected by the amendments in the law,” Justice Mansoor said. “No doubt accountability is compulsory in the country. The question is, who will ensure accountability process in the country,” Justice Shah asked.

“Those making the accountability process certain could not be exempted from it,” Khawaja Haris said.

“Those being acquitted with the NAB amendments could be convicted under another law,” Justice Shah said. “It could not happen that a person plunder everything and sits safe in home,” Justice Shah observed.

“It is possible that other law on corruption might be weaker,” Justice Shah said. “The Supreme Court under what authority orders strengthening the law,” he questioned.

The court adjourned further hearing of the case till Dec 07 (tomorrow).

In May, the National Assembly approved amendments to the National Accountability Ordinance 1999 in a bid to curtail the powers of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

The bill was tabled by Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar who said that multiple amendments were made in the accountability Ordinance to clip the powers exercised by the accountability bureau.

Sharing details of the key amendments, he said that after fresh amendments, no arrests could be made before completion of the investigation process, and the suspect would have the right to obtain bail. Moreover, 90-day remand period was also abolished.

“90-day remand is for terrorists, and we have now reduced the duration of remand to 14 days,” he said and added that no defamation campaign could be carried out unless the suspect is convicted in the case. The case could not be used for political purposes in the assets beyond means case, he said.






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