Court allows govt to sell off Ishaq Dar’s assets

Islamabad: The Accountability Court (AC) on Tuesday accepted National Accountability Bureau (NAB) petition seeking permission to sell off former finance minister Ishaq Dar’s assets in Pakistan.

AC Judge Muhammad Bashir had reserved the judgment after NAB submitted details of the absconding former finance minister. Ishaq Dar is accused of accumulating assets beyond known sources of income.

According to NAB, Dar owns three flats in Dubai, a house in Lahore’s Gulberg, four plots in Islamabad and one luxury car. NAB also informed the court that the former finance minister is a shareholder in three companies based in Dubai, while his wife owns six cars in Pakistan. “Dar and his wife have also invested Rs3,453,000 in Hajveri Holdings Pvt Limited,” NAB added.

The court permitted the provincial government to decide about Dar’s assets. The government has the authority to either auction off or keep the assets in its possession, the order stated.

The former finance minister has been in London since October 2017 for his medical treatment. The accountability court already declared him an absconder in the corruption reference against him.

NAB Special Prosecutor Imran Shafiq filed petition which sought the permission to sell all assets held by Dar in Pakistan. The plea stated that more than six months have passed but the accused (Ishaq Dar) has consciously and intentionally disappeared in order to avoid the process issued by this court.

The petition said that the accused pretended his ailment, but he is taking active part to perform his daily pursuits. He has failed to appear and justify his inability based on valid grounds.

The petition also stated that a proper order be issued through which a district officer (Revenue) may be ordered to appoint a receiver of the properties who may require to take possession, the rent or other revenues, being collected from these properties be received and collected by the receiver, and it must be deposited in the government treasury or as an alternative the district revenue officer be ordered to make appropriate arrangement for the sale of these properties.

A reference against the former finance minister was filed by NAB in light of the Supreme Court’s July 28 verdict in the Panama Papers case. Dar had earlier been declared a proclaimed offender by the accountability court due to his continuous absence from the proceedings.

AlamulKhabar Pakistan