Prime minister does not own any offshore companies, claims PML-N

ISLAMABAD (Online): PML-N leaders on Tuesday claimed that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif does not own any offshore companies and said the Panama Papers were an international conspiracy with Imran Khan as its central character.

“The director of Panama conspiracy is sitting outside the country. The report does not appear to be an outcome of two-month long investigation; it rather seems to be a result of more than a year’s preparation,” said Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique.

He added that “Imran Khan is the central character in the drama”.

Rafique said the JIT report contains material regarding which the respondents were not questioned when they appeared before the probe team.

Accusing the probe team of being partial, he said, “The JIT was not supposed to lead one-way traffic. Taking sides and being biased was not your job”.

The railways minister added his party will respond to offshore company allegations in the Supreme Court with strong arguments.

He said the JIT report will be responded to in the court in such a manner that the narrative, which originated yesterday, will be changed.

‘Narrative being shaped against prime minister’

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar urged patience over the final report submitted by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) in the Supreme Court, claiming that a narrative was being shaped against the prime minister since the submission of the report.

Dar added the Panamagate JIT report has several flaws, comprises of unsigned documents and even copies. He urged opposition parties to demonstrate patience for they also did so at the time of “Dharna-I and Dharna-II”.

The minister noted that no offshore company has the name of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as its owner, lamenting that efforts are being made to shape a narrative (against the PM) since the submission of the report in the Supreme Court.

Dar urged the system should be allowed to function, adding “There have been courts functioning outside the courts”.

“The JIT said on July 3 that I did not send tax returns from 1981 and 2003. I told them that I will take action against Federal Board of Revenue and asked them to inform me if they were not provided record by the FBR,” he said.

The minister said his tax filer, Zia Babri, told him the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had taken away all record in Musharraf’s tenure.

“Similarly, I was told that my returns from 2003 to 2008 were not received, but I have the receipt of tax returns submitted to the probe team. The record, I received from NAB on July 7, was also submitted to the JIT, of which tooo I have the receipt.”

Dar said he will submit record and offer to get it audited from an international firm. “Neither I was asked anything, nor a reply was sought from me and a finding was written in the report.”

“My financial record until the last penny will be clear,” he said, adding, “Both my sons are self-dependent since 2003 and as long as I am in politics, neither of them will do business in Pakistan”.

The minister said the investigators did not inquire as to how his assets grew to this extent. “I will present the entire record, from a needle to Mercedes.

“I am a professional and need not evade tax,” he added.

He added that he had informed the investigation team about the yearly amount he received being the financial advisor, which it mentioned in the report as “investment”.