KARACHI – An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) on Friday has given former federal minister for petroleum Dr Asim Hussain in the custody of the National Accountability Bureau.
As Justice Naimatullah Phulpoto began with the proceedings of the case, NAB filed a plea seeking custody of the accused. On the other hand, Sindh Police has formally given a clean chit to the former federal minister while rangers had put up a fight to nab the alleged culprit.
Dr Asim was presented before the Anti-Terrorism Court after his 14-day physical remand in police’s custody expired on Friday. The police filed a report that nullified rangers’ stance and freed the alleged culprit of terror charges. But rangers’ law officer fought for Dr Asim’s indictment and presented evidences in the court.
Both the law enforcement agencies would ‘wrestle’ in the court from now on in Dr Asim’s case. However, the former minister seemed relaxed as he walked out of the courtroom. The rangers’ law officer said that Sindh Police Inspector General Ghulam Haider Jamali changed the officer appointed in the case without prior informing to the complainant. The investigation officer was favouring the accused, he said.
He also said that Dr Asim had already confessed of providing shelter to ‘terrorists’ before the joint investigation team. “How a district police officer could reject a report put forth by seven senior officials of the investigation team,” he asked. In his statement, Dr Asim refused to accept that he ever made any confession.
He said that receipts of medical treatment of the ‘terrorists’ which were presented in the court were fake. Speaking before the court, Dr Asim said that he supports Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif as well as the National Action Plan. He said that he also supports the ongoing military actions in Karachi.
The rangers official said that the investigation officer of the Sindh police attempted to ‘be his own court’ and dissolved terror charges. Justice Phulpoto asked the police representative when a comprehensive report would be filed to which he replied December 24. The rangers would provide evidences against the accused in the forthcoming hearing.
The former federal minister was accused of treating criminals and ‘terrorists with head money’ in his hospital. The groups which used to get medical treatment in Dr Asim’s Dr Ziauddin Hospital included Lyari gang war’s Siraj Comrade group among others. Earlier in November, a case was registered against Dr Asim in the North Nazimabad police station as 90-day remand had expired.