Court orders recording of Nawaz Sharif’s statement in Toshakhana case by November 30

Nawaz Sharif

ISLAMABAD: The accountability court in Islamabad has issued an order directing the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to record the statement of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif in the Toshakhana reference by November 30.

Judge Muhammad Bashir presided over the proceedings, where Rana Irfan appeared as the pleader on behalf of the former premier, and lawyer Qazi Misbahul Hassan was also present. The court marked the attendance of the suspects at the start of the proceedings.

During the hearing, the defence lawyer stated that a defence statement was pending, and NAB should be instructed to record the statement. The lawyer emphasized the need for a supplementary reference since the present reference was filed in absentia.

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The NAB prosecutor requested time to review the application. In response, the court questioned the delay and directed NAB to call Nawaz Sharif and record his statement. The prosecutor agreed that the statement could be recorded by an investigating officer, and the bureau had no objection to this arrangement.

Suggesting an alternative, the defence lawyer proposed that NAB could provide a questionnaire, and they would submit written answers. Misbahul Hasan also urged the court to set an early date for the case.

In the previous hearing, Nawaz Sharif surrendered before the court after four years, and the accountability court accepted his bail application against bail bonds of Rs1 million. The Toshakhana reference also includes former president Asif Zardari, former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, and Anwar Majeed as nominated individuals. The proceedings are set to resume after Nawaz Sharif’s statement is recorded by November 30.

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