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Pakistan Finance Minister appears before accountability court

Pakistan Finance Minister appears before accountability court”

This is the seventh time in his trial in a graft case in the Panama Papers scandal.

At Monday's hearing, the anti-corruption watchdog National Accountability Bureau (NAB) prosecution presented two new witnesses against the minister, Dawn reported.

The NAB authorities had provided a list of 28 witnesses in the case on which the court directed the prosecution to produce two of the witnesses on next hearing, which is scheduled for today. Sharif was disqualified by the apex court, and ordered corruption cases against him, his children Maryam, Husain and Hasan and son-in-law Muhammad Safdar.

Abdul Rehman Gondal, the branch manager of a private bank's parliament branch, provided details to the court of different bank accounts held by Dar in the country.

Gondal informed the court that he first appeared before the NAB's investigation officer on August 17 this year.

The witness said that the account was opened in 2005, adding that he has provided details from March 2005 to 2017. They are being cross-examined by Dar's counsel Khawaja Haris.

The first witness will get his statement recorded before the court against the former PM, and his children.

Masood Ghani, the operations manager in a private bank, will give his testimony later in the day.

Later, NAB submitted a plea seeking endorsement for seizing the Dar's assets by the new NAB chairman.

The court has adjourned the case until October 30 and summoned Gondal and the finance minister on the next hearing again.

To-date, the court has recorded the statements of Ishtiaq Ali of Bank Alfalah, Shahid Aziz National Investment Trust and Tariq Javed of Al Baraka Bank.

The reference pertaining to Dar's owning assets disproportionate to his known sources of income was filed by the NAB in light of the Supreme Court's July 28 judgment in the Panama Papers case. On October 19, the anti-graft court had indicted Sharif, his daughter and son-in-law in a corruption case related to the Avenfield properties in London.



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