Zardari, Faryal seek review of Jan 7 verdict in fake bank accounts case

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ISLAMABAD: Former president Asif Ali Zardari and his sister Faryal Talpur filed a petition in the Supreme Court on Monday, seeking review of its January 7 verdict in fake bank accounts case.

In its detailed judgment on January 7, a three-judge bench of the apex court headed by the then chief justice Saqib Nisar had directed the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to carry out fresh investigations in light of the joint investigation team (JIT) report within two months and file references against the accused.

The top court, however, ordered the government to remove the names of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Murad Ali Shah from the exit control list (ECL).

Asif Ali Zardari, Faryal Talpur, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah, Omni Group’s Anwar Majeed and his son Abdul Ghani Majeed, former Pakistan Stock Exchange chairperson Hussain Lawai, Summit Bank Senior Vice-President Taha Raza were among 32 people who are being investigated by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA).

The petition states that the “impugned order suffered from errors floating on the surface of the record”.

The directions issued in the SC order are prejudicial to the petitioner in any futuristic eventualities of a fair trial and due process will not be possible under Article 10 (a) of the Constitution, it said.

“The powers under Article 184(3) of the Constitution are not unlimited, unfettered, completely discretionary, knowing no bounds,” reads the petition.

The review appeal further stated that the apex court’s decision “commits an error in holding that the constitution of the JIT is a valid exercise of jurisdiction in aid of a lawful object”.

The petitioners also claim that the JIT had exceeded its mandate and scope given to it. It said the allegations against Talpur were unlawful since JIT was only mandated to probe Zardari Group. “The result of the overstepping by the JIT from the task assigned to it in order dated September 5, 2018 by the Hon’able Court was politically exploited in that 172 persons enmass were placed on ECL including chairman PPP Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Murad Ali Shah.”