Court not satisfied with the performance of NAB: Justice Bandial

ISLAMABAD (APP): The Supreme Court on Wednesday accepted the post-arrest bail plea of Dr Dinshaw Hoshang Anklesaria, the main accused in the fake bank accounts case.

The three-member SC bench comprising Justice Umar Ata Bandial, Justice Sajjad Ali Shah and Justice Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, however, directed Dr Dinshaw to cooperate with the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in investigations and barred him from leaving the country.

The apex court, however, rejected the bail petition of co-accused Jamil Baloch, director of the Karachi Development Authority (KDA).

According to NAB, Dr Dinshaw, an accountant of Park Lane Estate Company and advisor to the Sindh chief minister had illegally got allotted an amenity plot belonging to Bagh Ibne Qasim Karachi to the Bahria Town, in connivance with Jamil Baloch causing over Rs 100 billion loss to the national exchequer. Bahria Town has constructed its Icon Tower over the plot.

Both Dr Dinshaw and Jamil Baloch had been in NAB custody in the fake bank accounts case.

During the course of proceedings, the NAB prosecutor said the Bureau would not oppose bail to Dr Dinshaw, However, it would oppose the bail pleas of government officials.

He said the Bureau had asked Zain Malik of Bahria Town to submit a no-objection certificate (NoC) over his plea bargain application till February 15, and in case of failure to do so, action would be taken against him.

Justice Bandial said the court was not satisfied with the performance of NAB. It wanted the Bureau stronger, its should show bravery and moral courage. Law should be applied equally to all. Accountability should be carried out in accordance with the law, but NAB seemed to be under  pressure from all quarters.

If the Bureau did not act in accordance with the law, the court would take action, he added.

Justice Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi said NAB did not have the power to act on its own. Only with amendment in Section 9, it could do whatever it wanted, he added.

He said NAB did not catch the big corrupt people while small thieves were put in jail for five years. The Bureau did not arrest the real culprit involved in corruption scams.

The prosecutor general replied that NAB did not work on its  own as it produced the accused before the Accountability Court within 24 hours of their arrest.

Justice Naqvi observed that the court knew that the cases dealt with by NAB were not ordinary criminal cases. NAB arrested government officials first but not those against whom it had  evidence of their wrongdoings.

The NAB prosecutor said there was no pressure on the Bureau and no one stopped it from working.

Justice Sajjad Ali Shah remarked that NAB knew that it was difficult for Zain Malik to produce the  NOC. If Zain Malik did so then NAB would initiate trial of the NOC’s issuers.

The NAB prosecutor replied that if the NOC was produced the its issuer would also be included in the lawsuit.

Justice Sajjad Ali Shah asked as to why NAB had given time to the main accused till February 15.

Justice Bandial said the bench had gone through the NAB’s performance report. The Bureau had collected billions of rupees, he added.