SC takes notice of Pakistanis named in Panama Papers

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Sophia Siddiqui

Islamabad

The Supreme Court has issued notices to the federal government and National Accountability Bureau on petitions filed against those Pakistanis whose names were mentioned in the Panama Papers.
A two-member bench headed by Justice Ejaz Afzal heard petitions on Thursday against 436 Pakistanis mentioned in the Panama Papers.
Presenting his argument, Advocate Tariq Asad, one of the petitioners, said indiscriminate action should be taken against those who formed offshore companies through corrupt means. He added such steps are taken to evade taxes in the home country.
To this, Justice Afzal said the main purpose of the hearing was to take action against those possessing assets beyond their known sources of income. However, he added, NAB was the actual body that would take the required steps.
As per the court, corruption is prevalent in all institutions of the state. Therefore the court combined the petitions filed by Asad and Jamaat-e-Islami chief Siraj-ul-Haq, issuing notices to NAB and the federal government.
Speaking to the media, Siraj-ul-Haq remarked that that JI’s petition has been accepted. “If a few thousand people are put behind bars then there will be hope for country’s future.” He also remarked that a Joint Investigation Team should be made if necessary. “We will continue our struggle against corruption.”
Nawaz Sharif stepped down as the prime minister of Pakistan after being disqualified from holding public office by the Supreme Court in a decision on the Panama Papers case. In the verdict, all five judges ruled to send references against Nawaz Sharif, his children Maryam, Hussain and Hasan, son-in-law Captain (retd) Safdar and Ishaq Dar to an accountability court.

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