C-class jail facilities for suspects in over Rs500mn corruption case: minister

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Law and Justice, Barrister Farogh Naseem, on Saturday revealed the fate of looters, saying that only C-class jail facility could be given after the proceeding of corruption case of more than Rs500 million belonging to the national exchequer.

Farogh Naseem gave the statement while addressing a press conference alongside Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Information Firdous Ashiq Awan here in Islamabad.

The law minister said that the federal government will serve Pakistan and its allies in every possible way as Prime Minister Imran Khan promised to provide justice across the country. A new law will be introduced for overseas Pakistanis, he announced.

While responding to the allegations of providing special facilities to the corruption suspects, he clarified that the suspects in more than Rs500 million financial irregularity caught by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) will only get ‘C-class’ jail facilities.

He further said that the government is linking ‘whistleblower law’ with the legislation of benami [undeclared] properties and the law ministry is consistently getting instruction from the PM Khan.

“However, there is a need to bring improvements in different laws by the provinces. We are trying to reduce the period of criminal cases to 1-1.5 years. Media is the fourth pillar of the state and it has an important role in the implementation of the regulations. The ministry is working to better benami transaction regulations as well.”

“The government is now transferring power to courts after suspending dress code laws. I praise the decision of Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) [Asif Saeed Khosa] to conduct hearings through video link. There are hundreds of cases pending in the courts. The formulation of law regarding the Legal Aid and Justice Authority is underway. Moreover, we are also bringing an alternative system to reduce the burden on the courts.”

“Supreme Court (SC) has been linked with the different registries present in different cities. The law ministry is considering special regulations for those cannot afford lawyers and payment of fines. However, the matter related to the appointment of judges is complicated which is in accordance with the Constitution and cannot be changed. I prefer to give powers to the commission for recording witnesses’ statements instead of courts.”

Firdous Ashiq Awan told journalists that the country’s leadership is united on the national cause of Kashmir dispute as a large number of nationals had reached Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and supported the federal government.

She said that the premier has issued special instructions to her for thanking the people of Pakistan after the successful rally in AJK for expressing solidarity with Kashmiris.

“The nation has hopes with the PM Imran Khan for getting rid of the rotten [governance] system, however, the government will have to deal with many legal and cultural challenges for bringing a true change.”

“The federal government is amending various laws and society is incomplete without the role of an opposition. The opposition side should have review its attitude as it is interrupting the ongoing efforts for Kashmir cause.”

She urged for united on Kashmir cause as Kashmiris are looking towards the Pakistani nation but they have not linked their expectations with a political party.

“PM Khan is exposing the Indian thoughts while we need to be united on the Kashmir issue. The opposition should also become part of the ongoing efforts being made by the federal government and we will play our role to bring the same rhetoric on Kashmir. The elements which oppose the Pakistani’s rhetoric on Kashmir dispute will be removed from the political picture of the country.”

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