KARACHI: The Sindh High Court on Friday turned down an appeal of former provincial minister Sharjeel Inam Memon seeking urgent hearing of his post-arrest bail application in a case pertaining to the Rs5.76 billion corruption in the Sindh information department.
A two-judge bench headed by Justice Iqbal Ahmed Kalhoro rejected the request for urgent hearing of Mr Memon’s bail application and maintained that it would be heard on the date earlier fixed by the court’s office as there was no need of urgency.
His counsel Advocate Sardar Latif Khosa requested the bench to hear Mr Memon’s bail application at an earlier date telling the judges that the former minister had not been provided due medical facilities in jail.
The Pakistan Peoples Party leader and 11 others were arrested in October outside the Sindh High Court after their interim bail pleas were revoked in a case pertaining to corruption of Rs5.76 billion in the information department.
The PPP leader along with former provincial information secretary, other officials of the information departments and heads of different advertisement agencies was booked by the National Accountability Bureau for embezzlement of Rs5,766,479,766 purportedly paid to seven advertising agencies for awareness campaigns from 2013 to 2015.
Comments sought on APML’s plea
The same bench directed the deputy commissioner of central on a petition filed by the All Pakistan Muslim League seeking permission for holding a public gathering on the Liaquatabad flyover on Jan 7.
The APML, headed by former president retired General Pervez Musharraf, on Thursday moved the Sindh High Court seeking permission for holding a public gathering on the flyover.
APML secretary general of south region Mohammed Aslam Menai and other party leaders filed a constitutional petition in the high court submitting that the party planned to hold a public gathering on the Liaquatabad flyover, but the administration was not willing to permit it.
The petitioners said that they had approached the authorities concerned several times for getting the permission to hold the public meeting but their application was not entertained.
They recalled that in the recent past, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan and the Pak Sarzameen Party had also held their gatherings at the same venue after being duly allowed by the authorities concerned, but the APML was being denied permission to hold the ‘Jalsa’.
The APML leaders stated that conducting political activities and public gatherings was a right of the party, as enshrined in the Constitution, but it had been deprived of its right.
Besides, they said, Rs60 million had already been spent on the gathering’s preparation.
Impleading the home secretary, inspector general of police, city police chief, district central’s deputy commissioner, Liaquatabad SHO and others as respondents, the petitioners requested the court to grant the party permission to hold a public gathering on one of the longest flyovers in the city.
Life imprisonment upheld
Meanwhile an appellate bench of the high court upheld the life imprisonment awarded to a man in a kidnapping for ransom case.
An antiterrorism court had sentenced Ali Jaan to suffer life in prison in 2014 after he was found guilty of kidnapping two brothers and demanding ransom for their safe release in 2011.
The convict through his counsel challenged his punishment in the high court and asked it to set aside the judgement of the trial court and pass his release order.
The defence counsel contended before the judges that the ATC did not follow due procedure while convicting his client.
The bench rejected the appeal of Ali Jaan against his conviction after hearing the final arguments from the defence and prosecution sides.
The court ruled that it did not find any reason to set aside the appellant’s term.
Published in Dawn, January 6th, 2018