Islamabad (August 29, 2017): Supreme Court on Tuesday reserved its verdict on a petition of PPP leader Dr Asim Hussain seeking removal of his name from from the Exit Control List (ECL) so that he may travel abroad for medical treatment.
A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Justice Dost Muhammad Khan heard the petition of Asim, who is a close aide of PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari.
Justice Qazi Faez Issa asked as to why Dr Asim was arrested by Rangers. His counsel replied that he was arrested by Rangers on charges of providing treatment facilities to alleged terrorists at his hospital.
In obvious reference to General Musharraf, Justice Dost Muhammad Khan remarked that some people had gone abroad on the pretax of backache.
The court after hearing the counsel of petitioner and law officers of the federal government reserved judgment.
In his petition, Dr Asim had stated he was fighting “a number of health conditions” and highlighted the ‘urgency’ with which he needed medical care.
The petition had pointed out that the PPP leader had already been granted bail by the Sindh High Court (SHC) and anti-terrorism courts.
In March, the Sindh High court had granted bail to the PPP leader in two corruption references filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).
On the same day, an anti-terrorism court issued a release order for the former federal minister in a case relating to the alleged treatment of terrorists at Ziauddin Hospital, where the accused is the deputy managing director.
NAB had been pursuing Dr Hussain on charges that the former petroleum minister deprived the state exchequer of Rs462.5bn between 2010 and 2013 — Rs450bn through a fertiliser scam, Rs9.5bn through land fraud and Rs3bn through money laundering.
Dr Hussain was eventually released from prison on March 31 after 19 months in detention.
He had filed a request at the SHC for the removal of his name from the ECL. However, the plea was rejected on June 5 after which he moved to the apex court.