Jahangir says officers probing him are ‘controversial’

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Inquiry against me shouldn’t be done over specific phone call


Staff Reporter
Lahore

Former secretary general of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf and sugar baron Jahangir Tareen on Saturday called for a free and fair investigation into the money laundering and fraud charges against him.

The estranged PTI leader was speaking to the media outside a sessions court in Lahore.

During the hearing, the court extended the bail of Tareen and his son, Ali, who have been charged with money laundering and alleged fraud, till April 22.

Once again, Punjab lawmakers from the ruling PTI appeared alongside Tareen. Around 22 MPAs and eight MNAs were present to support the sugar baron, including PTI MNA Raja Riaz, provincial minister Nauman Langrial, MPA Nazir Chohan and Khurram Leghari.

Speaking to the media outside the court, Tareen said: “Conduct an inquiry by all means.

But the team carrying out the inquiry is biased. It is carrying out the investigation on someone’s directions.

“I demand that a fair team be constituted for the investigation which is not mired in controversy and works according to the law, and not on someone’s phone call.”

Tareen clarified that he was not trying to escape the clutches of the law.

“The PTI is my party. It is our party. If we don’t stay within the party, where else will we go? But right now we want justice,” he said, reiterating that the investigation against him should be fair.

“New people should be brought in [and] a new team should be constituted. Look at this again, it will not make a difference.

You have a lot of time. But do not entrust the responsibility to those that give orders on telephone calls.”

He stated that the FIRs registered against him were drawn up in Islamabad and sent to Lahore on a USB where they were signed.

“This should not happen. The investigation should be carried out in a fair and objective manner.”

Meanwhile, PTI MNA Raja Riaz said that the lawmakers standing alongside Tareen stood in solidarity with him, adding that Prime Minister Imran Khan was their “leader and captain”.

“All those lawmakers that have gathered here today have one request to make. PM Imran there are people around you that are targeting Tareen, an extremely valuable asset to the party.”

Fake cases have been registered against him, Riaz said. “Don’t think we are trying to blackmail you.

We are not blackmailers, we are sympathisers. We want to see the party become strong.

We want to see the PTI government and PM Imran be strong and secure.”He said that those conspiring against Tareen were also conspiring against the PTI and the prime minister.

“That is why there is no need to get emotional or angry,” he said, adding that they were asking for insaaf from the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf.

Provincial minister Nauman Langrial said that the lawmakers had gathered in solidarity with Tareen and to support him.

He said that Tareen had helped those gathered during tough times and made them a part of the PTI.

He stated that all Punjab lawmakers gathered alongside Tareen would support and help him while also working to strengthen the party.

“We can’t see beyond the party. We want to strengthen it,” he said, adding that there were elements that wanted to weaken the party and the country. He appealed to “friends” of the PTI to lend their support to Tareen. “We want justice,” he said.

Meanwhile, a group of the PTI members have written a letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan seeking his personal attention to the issue of Jahangir Tareen.

Raja Riaz MNA, who has been among 30 signatories of the letter, talking to media here said that the members have sought time from the prime minister for a meeting in the letter.