KARACHI/ISLAMABAD - An anti-corruption court issued non-bailable warrants for the arrest of former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and senior PPP leader Makhdoom Amin Faheem here on Thursday.
The warrants against both senior leaders of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) were issued in a seven-billion-rupee financial scam in the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP).
Both the accused leaders had not appeared in court during last three hearing despite issuance of notices to them. The court directed for arresting and producing the accused before the court on next hearing (June 17). The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has registered a case of corruption in TDAP when Amin Faheem was federal commerce minister. The key accused in the scam, Muhammad Firdous, has turned approver against the PPP leaders. He has confessed to having paid ‘first instalment of Rs5 million’ to Gilani at the Prime Minister House for the release of freight subsidy funds.
After the scam unearthed, FIA reportedly registered at least 65 cases relating to freight subsidy and managed arrests of dozens of officers, including two former TDAP chiefs, owners of the various fake companies and front men running such bogus companies for providing face-saving to the real culprits.
Meanwhile, Yousaf Raza Gilani, who is also PPP vice chairman, has warned the PML-N government against his political victimisation, saying he is ready to face all the cases registered against him.
“I advise you to do proper research and register as many cases as you can for I am not afraid of them. Keep in mind, treat us the way you can tolerate in future,” sad PPP central leader Yousuf Raza Gilani, giving a message to the incumbent government.
In reference to his non-bailable arrest warrants in Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP), Gilani said he was not afraid of any case against him as these were totally baseless. “I am ready to appear in any court which summons me for I respect the judiciary,” he added.
“I cannot understand why I have been implicated in all the cases, including NRO, Haj scandal, NICL and Ogra reference. I have also been acquitted in most of cases,” former PM said, adding his sons were also being involved in various cases. “I was imprisoned, I faced it with courage. So this is my message to the government to treat me the way you can tolerate in future,” he added.
About the court orders in financial irregularities in the TDAP, the PPP leader said he would consult it with his lawyers. “This is not the only case, I have faced many cases,” he said, talking to The Nation.
Staff Reporter from Lahore adds: Yousaf Raza Gilani has said that he will appear in the court in Islamabad on June 4 and also in Karachi in the TDAP case.
“I am determined to defend myself as I have done in the past,” the ex-premier said in a statement on Thursday. “If the competent appointing authority is to be held responsible, then no one can be spared. The intentions are motivated by vendetta. I am the only one who has received the notices to appear in the court,” he said.
He lamented that no case in this country was completed without implicating him whether it was a case of Ogra, NICL, NRO, TADP or Haj scam. “The beneficiaries of the NRO have been exonerated, but I am still facing the fabricated cases. These are the worst examples of miscarriage of justice,” he observed.
Gilani said his sons had been implicated in false cases while his other son had been kidnapped and he knew the amount of torture his family members were facing.