Case against Dr Asim is baseless: Defence Counsel

Sindh CM’s change doesn’t affect any of my cases: Dr Asim

By Nasir Mahmood

KARACHI: Former petroleum minister Dr Asim Hussain has said that appointment of Murad Ali Shah would not affect the cases against him. He was replying to questions by the media after hearing of the JJVL case at Accountability Court IV was adjourned on Saturday. Dr Hussain denied the rumors that Murad Ali Shah met him previous night. However, he welcomed the change in political leadership of the province. While answering a question, he said that he has no interest in becoming Governor of Sindh. Earlier, the accountability court adjourned hearing of the JJVL reference until August 13. During the hearing, counsels of all the accused opposed framing of charge complaining that prosecution had not provided the copies of witnesses’ statements and the court should order them in the matter. Dr. Asim Hussain’s counsel, in his arguments in the hearing, told the court that his client cannot be charged as the documentation in the case is not complete yet. If those documents and witnesses were produced by the prosecution in the court my client would have been cleared from all the charges, he said. Since all the evidences are in the favor of accused, prosecution may be directed to place all the record before this court. All the co-accused were present in the court including Khalid Rehman, Shoaib Warsi, Muhammad Usman, Zahid Bakhtiar, Jamil Ansari, Iqbal Z. Ahmed and Zohair Siddiqui. Azhar Siddique Advocate informed the court that an application was already pending with the Sindh High Court and fixed for hearing on August 05. Let us wait for the order of SHC, he said. In his arguments,the counsel said that before framing of charge Investigating Officer shall answer that why decision by Islamabad High Court was not produced before this court, why documents about the tendering process were not placed on record and how he calculated the amount cited in the NAB reference. He said that High Court has allowed the bail to other accused after detailed hearing, while the case against Dr Asim is also baseless. Shoaib Warsi’s bail was initially rejected but later accepted by the court. This trial does not qualify to run; since the prosecution has concealed the information and evidences. Prosecution has to place all the material and evidence of the case on record of the court and not to give the decision, he added. The court after objection by the lawyers once again deferred the framing of charge.