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JIT Head Wajid Zia’s Statement Could not be Recorded in the Absence of JIT Report

Today, an accountability court resumed the hearing of a case against former finance minister Ishaq  Dar, for accretion of assets beyond his known means of earning. According to the NAB reference, “the suspect had assimilated assets and pecuniary interests/resources in his name or in the name of his dependents of an approximate amount of Rs.831.678 million as per the investigation conducted so far. The assets are disproportionate to his known sources of income for which he could not reasonably account for.”

Worth mentioning here that Dar’s Hajvery Trust Case was also reopened by the court.

Head of Joint Investigation Team (JIT), Additional Director General (AIG) of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), Wajid Zia, and investigating officer Nadir Abbas presented before the court to get their statements recorded.

Nevertheless, the evidence of Wajid Zia, a prosecution witness, could not be verified and documented in the absence of the original JIT report which is currently in the possession of Supreme Court.

Following the hearing, the court postponed the case till February 12.

JIT report submitted in SC was requested to be issued to the accountability court on January 31, 2018. Imran Shafiq, a NAB prosecutor, determined that SC constituted a JIT to examine the Panama leaks on April 20, 2017.

According to Shafiq, “the JIT collected voluminous material, recorded numerous statements, prepared its exhaustive report and submitted before the SC”.

He further informed that the JIT report was part of the reference filed against Dar, former finance minister, as the apex court had directed to prepare and file reference(s) on the grounds of evidence collected by JIT. Moreover, he added that Zia was a witness in the case but the evidence and the original JIT report inclusive of complete set of volumes is in the custody of the Supreme Court.

As told by Shafiq, “JIT report has to be tendered in evidence of PW [prosecution witness] Mr. Wajid Zia being mandatory requirement of law. Therefore, it is in the interest of justice that the original JIT report may please be requisitioned from the Registrar office of the Supreme Court”.

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