Lahore High Court asks NAB to submit response in plea against Mir Shakeel’s arrest

LAHORE: Lahore High Court asked the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Thursday to submit clause-wise response in the plea against the arrest of Jang Geo Media Group Editor-in-Chief Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman in relation to a fake private property case.

Mir Shakeel’s wife, Shahina Shakil, had moved the LHC on March 16 through Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan challenging the detention.

A two-member bench under Justice Naeem Ahmed resumed the hearing in the case today, where Barrister Ahsan appeared to present the arguments.

In the hearing today, the court asked the NAB to present reasons behind the arrest, clause by clause, in reference to the plea.

During the proceedings, the judge enquired about the extension of Mir Shakeel’s remand by an accountability court on Wednesday.

“If the accountability court in the case has extended the remand then what is left?” the court said to the NAB prosecutor.

To which, the prosecutor responded that the plea against the extension in remand is also queued up to be heard.

The LHC then said that it is also going to hear the plea against the extension today, after which it briefly adjourned the hearing for a while.

After resuming the hearing, the LHC directed that the remand order by the accountability court should be clubbed with the petition against the arrest.

The NAB chairman, a director-general and judges of the accountability court, along with others, have been named in the petition.

The petition is based on the assertion that NAB violated the PTI government’s own 2019 businessmen policy by arresting Mir Shakeel.

“In the [accountability court] order that handed MSR over to authorities on physical remand, the judge did not explain the grounds [of doing so],” the petition further notes.

In earlier arguments before the court, the counsel for NAB had informed the bench that the case was still at the inquiry stage.

The court had stated that if this was so, the bureau should have simply asked MSR questions and recorded his statement instead of arresting him.

The court had remarked that the judiciary and the press are two fundamental pillars of the state and NAB will not be allowed to shake them up.

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