‘Only two out of 5 accused under custody’


By Nasir Mahmood

KARACHI: A division bench of Sindh High Court, comprising Justice Abdul Maalik Gaddi and Justice Muhammad Saleem Jessar yesterday adjourned the hearing of bail application of Dr Asim Hussain and four others till Dec 26. A bench headed by Justice Ahmed Ali M Sheikh was to hear the bail plea but as Justice Ahmed Ali M Sheikh was on leave, the plea was placed before another bench comprising Justice Abdul Maalik Gaddi and Justice Muhammad Saleem Jessar. Barrister Latif Khosa, appearing on behalf of the applicant, former petroleum minister Dr Asim Hussain arguing bail application under section 426, Cr.P.C agitated medical grounds and explained the ailment history of his client with reference to the reports by eight (8) different medical boards. On a query by Justice Abdul Maalik Gaddi the defence lawyers stated that out of the five accused named in the reference, three has been admitted to bail before arrest while the remaining two including Dr Asim were under custody. The court was also informed about the progress of the said reference in which so far six prosecution witnesses have appeared and recorded their statements out of a list of 36 prosecution witnesses in total. Khosa stated that Dr Asim Hussain has been admitted to bail on medical grounds by SHC in a case registered against him under Anti-Terrorism Act. He further submitted that his client Dr Asim was under custody since last one and a half year, presently he is critically ill and admitted in ICU of the NICVD last evening due to sudden heart ailment. He was also waiting for disc surgery after the bail is granted from the court. The NAB prosecutor, Akram Javed Advocate, raising objection submitted that the case I.O was not present in the court to assist him therefore the hearing be deferred to a next date. Latif Khosa opposed the adjournment request but the court adjourned hearing till 26 December. Dr Asim Hussain also had a hearing of case before the NAB IV court yesterday but due to his sudden serious illness and admission in NICVD , the NAB court was informed accordingly. The NAB court in view of ailment of Dr Asim adjourned hearing of reference No. 13/2016 for 24th December. Dr Asim’s health deteriorated suddenly on Monday as NAB court premises was swarmed by the personnel of Pakistan Rangers. He has developed ranger’s phobia due to ill-treatment during his 90 days of custody with Rangers.