Non-bailable arrest warrant for ex-PM cancelled | The Express Tribune


An accountability court in Islamabad on Tuesday cancelled the non-bailable arrest warrant issued earlier in the day for former prime minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and others in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) reference.

Judge Nasir Javed Rana had issued the directives after the former prime minister failed to appear for the hearing of the LNG reference and did not file a request for leave either.

Later, the PML-N leader’s lawyer Zafarullah filed a request to cancel the warrants. The court accepted the request, cancelling Abbasi and former Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) chairperson Uzma Adil Khan’s warrants.

Abbasi and Uzma are accused, alongside former finance minister Miftah Ismail and others, of having awarded the LNG Terminal-1 contract without following due process and transparent means.

Abbasi and the others were accused of illegally awarding the LNG terminal contract for a period of 15 years to a company of their liking in violation of rules.

The inquiry into the LNG contract case was initiated in 2019, almost one-and-a-half years after the NAB Karachi office closed a similar inquiry against Abbasi for his alleged role in the award of a multibillion-rupee contract for the import and distribution of LNG.

Later, in 2021, the Islamabad High Court granted bail to the former prime minister in the case, noting that the matter did not fall in the domain of NAB as the senior PML-N leader had not made any financial gain.

A petition for amendment of the indictment of the PML-N leader in the LNG reference is also pending with the high court.

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