Dr Asim indicted for Rs462b corruption

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Irfan Aligi

Karachi—The Accountability Court in Karachi has formally announced indictment of former advisor on petroleum and former Sindh Higher Education Commission Chairman and owner of Ziauddin chain of hospitals Dr Asim Hussain in mega corruption case of Rs462 billion embezzled inflicting colossal financial damage to the national exchequer.
However, the accuse Dr Hussain rejecting all allegations said the indictment was based on ill-will of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) which had concealed facts from the accountability court.
Other accused placed under formal indictment Muhammad Ejaz Chaudhry, Muhammad Safdar Hussain and Athar Hussain have been alleged of inflicting huge pecuniary loss to the national exchequer while Dr Hussain has been accused of money laundering, illegal occupation of public land and misuse of powers as advisor on petroleum and HEC Chairman.
The accountability court has directed all witnesses in the case to appear in the court on May 14.
The NAB prosecutor told the accountability court that the accused Dr Hussain had provided wrong information to the Council of Common Interest.
The accused caused an artificial crisis of natural gas that affected the fertilizer sector, which cause the price of a bag of Urea fertilizer to jump from 850 to 1830. Thus the government was compelled to announce for a specific sum of money to the farmers in terms of subsidy.
The NAB prosecutors further apprise the court that the accuse Dr Hussain illegally occupied precious land for the extension of his Ziauddin Hospital. As a whole, he caused loss to the national exchequer to the tune of Rs462 billion from 2012 to 2013.
During arguments by the NAB prosecutor, the accused Dr Hussain continued to interrupt the NAB prosecutor, which irked the court and thus the court ordered the accused to stay quiet until the NAB prosecutor had finished his arguments or else the court would be compelled to take action.
The counsels of the accused also continued to make hue and cry and they told the court that the NAB prosecutors have not provided them with case record.

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