New York property probe: IHC summons Asif Zardari today

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ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has summoned Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarians (PPPP) President Asif Ali Zardari in a pre-arrest bail plea filed before it in a case pertaining to his alleged property unearthed by NAB in NewYork. The division bench of the IHC comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Aamer Farooq heard the proceedings yesterday on a pre-arrest bail plea sought by Asif Zardari. The court asked if Zardari was seeking a pre-arrest bail plea, to which his counsel Farooq H Naek said that he was currently getting treatment in the hospital. “He should be exempted from court proceedings,” the counsel argued as the court directed the PPPP president to appear before the IHC today and remarked that if he was given exemption then it could become an example for others. It is pertinent to mention here that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has initiated a fresh inquiry against PPP co-chairman and former president Asif Ali Zardari. The corruption watchdog served him a notice along with a questionnaire to provide information and documents concerning the pricey apartment he allegedly owns in New York City to a combined investigation team (CIT). “This notice hinges around the property at the Belaire, 524 East 72nd Street, 37F, Manhattan, New York, United States,” read the notice. It said an initial inquiry revealed that former president and PPPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari owns the apartment, however, “this property does not figure out in the disclosures made by you in Pakistan”. “Moreover, there appears no lawful remittances by you from Pakistan for the acquisition of the said property as well. In view thereof, you are requested to provide detailed answers to the enclosed questionnaire along with supporting information/documents concerning the subject Apartment in New York City, United States,” the notice said.

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