Pervez Elahi arrested in second corruption case

F.P. Report
LAHORE: PTI Central President and former Punjab chief minister Chaudhry Pervez Elahi was again arrested after a court in Lahore disposed of a corruption case against him on Friday.
The former Punjab chief minister was now arrested in connection with another corruption case registered against him in Gujranwala, said Anti-Corruption Establishment Director General Sohail Zafar Chattha. Sohail Chattah they will also going into appeal over the discharge of first corruption case.
Moments earlier, a court in Lahore has disposed of the corruption case against Chaudhry Pervez Elahi for lack of evidence. Judicial Magistrate Ghulam Murtaza Virk while pronouncing the verdict declined to grant physical remand of the former CM. The court declared that the anti-corruption investigators failed to present any credible evidence against Pervez Elahi. Anti-Corruption Establishment was after Pervez Elahi for alleged corruption in awarding contracts for building roads in Lalamusa, Dhinga and Gujrat. The investigators were of the view that the contracts were awarded even before the publication of advertisements for the development projects. A cumulative loss of Rs1,229 million was detected in these projects, they added.
Earlier, the judicial magistrate reserved his verdict on the physical remand of Pervez Elahi as demanded by the ACE in a corruption case. Elahi was presented before the magistrate court today. The anti-corruption investigators sought his 14-day physical remand in the corruption case. At the outset of the hearing, the learned judge inquired of the investigators that the case mentioned collusion of government officials ‘so how many government officials have been included in the investigation’. Then the court asked Elahi to come to the rostrum.
The former Punjab chief minister told the court that he had nothing to do with the case. “I’m innocent. I always insist that all processes be completed,” he added. Then Judicial Magistrate Ghulam Murtaza Virk reserved his judgment on remand.
The former chief minister was brought to the court in an armoured personnel vehicle. Prosecutor informed Judicial Magistrate Ghulam Murtaza that Pervez Elahi was arrested after his bail plea was disposed of. The Anti-Corruption Establishment with the help of police arrested Pervez Elahi outside his Zahoor Palace residence in Gulberg on Thursday evening in connection with a case involving Rs70 million corruption in development funds allocated for the Gujrat district. His arrest came after a lot of botched raids at his residences in Lahore and Gujrat.
In a statement issued yesterday, the ACE said that PTI President Elahi was “wanted” in multiple cases and his bail was dismissed by an anti-corruption court a few days ago. It further claimed that Elahi had submitted his “fake medical certificates” to the court to secure bail which was denied. Meanwhile, DG Anti-Corruption Sohail Zafar Chathha said that Elahi would not be transferred to Gujranwala. He said that the accused would be investigated in Lahore by the ACE and he would not be handed over to the police. PTI president Chaudhry Parvez Elahi has been produced before a court in Lahore to get his remand in a corruption case.
Talking to media outside the court, the PTI leader said he was innocent and “supporter of Pakistan Army”. In a message to the party workers, he asked them to stand firm and did not lose courage. A team of the anti-corruption establishment (ACE), with the help of police, on Thursday arrested the PTI president outside his residence, Zahoor Elahi Palace, over graft charges, confirmed Punjab interim information minister Amir Mir.
Mr Mir said he had been arrested for receiving kickbacks in development projects, adding that he would be shifted to the anti-corruption headquarters shortly. “The area around his house had been cordoned off for last couple of days,” he added. At first, he resisted but when the police tried to break his car’s driving side window, he came out of his car, he said. “Talks of human rights violations should be toned down because he is accused of corruption,” he added.
“He will be treated in jails as other accused are treated,” he said. The arrest came as an anti-corruption court of Lahore had, earlier, rejected Mr Elahi’s bail petition in a case of alleged corruption in development projects. Mr Elahi’s lawyer told the court that the former chief minister was suffering from chest pain and could not appear in court. The prosecution argued that the medical certificate submitted by Parvez Elahi’s counsel in court was fake.