SC seeks foreign account details of Musharraf, Zardari in NRO case

NRO was passed by Musharraf in 2007, it granted amnesty to politicians and other individuals by quashing various corruption and criminal cases against them

Qamber Zaidi
Photo: File 

ISLAMABAD: The apex court has ordered former presidents General (retd) Pervez Musharraf and Asif Ali Zardari and former attorney general Justice (retd) Malik Qayyum to submit the details of their foreign bank accounts in the National Reconciliation Ordinance case.

The NRO, passed by Musharraf in 2007, granted amnesty to politicians and other individuals by quashing various corruption and criminal cases against them so they could return to the country and engage in the democratic process.

A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar heard the case Tuesday.

During the hearing, the chief justice remarked they wanted details of all assets owned by the respondents. He said respondents should also submit details of their children’s foreign assets.

Regarding declaration of asset details, Zardari’s counsel told the court his client submitted an affidavit regarding his properties as he contested General Elections 2018. To this, Justice Ijaz-ul-Ahsan asked him to submit the same affidavit to the Supreme Court as well.

Advocate Farooq H Naek, representing Pakistan Peoples Party leaders, said the party chairperson, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari submitted the details of assets owned by him to the Election Commission of Pakistan.

The court sought details and adjourned the hearing for an indefinite period.

Earlier, Zardari submitted his response to the Supreme Court in the NRO case, stressing he had no role in forming the controversial law.

Zardari informed the court that cases against him were quashed in 2007 in compliance with NRO, however, they had reopened after the NRO was overruled by the apex court.

He was acquited from criminal cases in their subsequent trials, the response stated further.

The case

Nominating Musharraf, Zardari and Qayyum as respondents, petitioner Feroz Shah Gilani had requested the court in April to order recovery of ‘huge amounts of public money’ misappropriated and wasted by them through unlawful means ‘already on record in different judgments of the Supreme Court and high court’.

He had contended that Musharraf subverted the Constitution by declaring emergency followed by the promulgation of the NRO, through which criminal and corruption cases against politicians, including Zardari, were ‘arbitrarily withdrawn’ causing huge financial losses to the national exchequer.