ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court allowed Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader Dr Asim Hussain on Tuesday to go abroad for a month for medical treatment and ordered that his name be temporarily removed from the exit control list (ECL).
On Tuesday, a three-judge bench headed by Justice Dost Muhammad Khan took up Dr Asim’s petition requesting that his name be removed from the ECL.
After hearing the arguments, the top court gave him one month’s permission to go abroad and receive medical treatment on a surety of Rs6 million.
It set aside the Sindh High Court’s orders in June wherein Dr Asim’s plea for the removal of his name from the ECL was turned down.
The court added that it expected Dr Asim to fulfill his commitment and return to Pakistan within a month.
The court has also rejected the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) appeal against Dr Asim’s bail and expressed concerns over Dr Asim’s allegations that he was tortured.
Justice Qazi Faez Essa remarked that NAB was ruining its own reputation and if the bureau was putting its heart into its work, the case would have concluded by now.
On August 2015, Dr Asim — former petroleum minister and a close aide of former president Asif Ali Zardari — was detained during a raid at the Higher Education Commission office in the Clifton area of Karachi over alleged embezzlement.
Later, the SHC granted bail to Dr Asim in two corruption references involving as much as Rs479 billion, after his counsel Anwar Mansoor told the court that his client needed medical treatment and complete rest.
One of the references against Dr Asim accuses him of embezzling Rs462 billion while the other of Rs17 billion for allegedly awarding illegal contracts of five gas fields in Sindh to Jamshoro Joint Venture Limited.
Dr Asim is accused of concealing assets, granting illegal allotments, misusing authority, carrying out land grabbing and fraud and giving illegal contracts during his tenure in Sui Southern Gas Pipelines Limited. He is also facing a case in an anti-terrorism court.
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