Former Pak president Zardari gets bail - GulfToday

Former Pak president Zardari gets bail


Asif Ali Zardari leaves the High Court building in Islamabad. File / Associated Press

Tariq Butt

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday granted bail to former president and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) supremo Asif Ali Zardari on medical grounds in two references pertaining to money laundering through fake bank accounts.

A two-judge bench, comprising IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Amir Farooq, directed Zardari to submit two surety bonds of Rs10 million each in the two references lodged against him.

Flanked by former Sindh chief minister Qaim Ali Shah and sister Aseefa, PPP chairperson Bilawal during a chat with reporters thanked the judiciary for providing relief to his father.

He criticised the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for failing to present a response in the petition filed by PPP leader and his aunt Faryal Talpur.

Zardari was arrested in June this year for his alleged involvement in money laundering of billions through fake accounts. He was receiving medical treatment at the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) in Islamabad.

He had moved a petition through his lawyer Farooq H Naek and nominated the NAB and an accountability court of Islamabad as respondents.

Zardari moved the IHC on Dec. 3, over a month after the former premier Nawaz Sharif was given similar relief.

The petition said Zardari is suffering from multiple diseases - such as diabetes, cervical lumbar and spondylosis, sensory and motor neuropathy with impaired proprioception.

According to the petition, Zardari also has a Holter monitor attached to his chest, enabling doctors to check and note variations in his heartbeat and blockages in his arteries.

Meanwhile, in a related development apparently targeting opposition leaders, the federal cabinet has decided to impose curbs on media coverage of convicts and absconders.

“The prime minister has given a task to the law minister to draft a law to curb media coverage of convicts and absconders,” Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan told reporters.

Although she did not name any of the convicts or absconders against whom the new law was being considered, it is believed that she was talking about former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Maryam, sons Hassan and Hussain and former finance minister Ishaq Dar.

Related articles