KARACHI: A local banking court on Friday granted interim bail to former president and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari in connection to a money laundering case. Zardari along with his counsel Farooq Naik appeared before the banking court in Karachi and was granted interim bail on furnishing bail bonds of Rs2 million.
Journalists surrounded Zardari as he arrived at the court. “You did not come in helicopter?” asked the journalist. “Wait here and I will come back in helicopter,” he replied. Zardari also announced that Aitzaz Ahsan will be the next president.
Talking to media, Farooq H. Naik said that after becoming President of Pakistan, Asif Zardari left all business relations with Zardari Group (Pvt) Ltd.
He said that the former president has been granted interim bail for 15 days. “We are ready to face the trial,” Zardari’s counsel added.
The case was adjourned till September 4.
“My client has not been shown as a suspect in the case. It has been said that money from A1 International came into Zaradri Group. How can Zardari be declared fugitive when he was contesting election? Neither the FIR nor the charge sheet says that my client committed money laundering,” he maintained.
It is pertinent to mention here that Zardari was granted protective bail from Islamabad High Court (IHC) while his sister Faryal Talpur, close aide and Omni Group Chairman Anwar Majeed and his three sons are out on interim bails.
Asif Ali Zardari, Faryal Talpur and their associates are accused of sending Rs35 billion abroad through fake accounts after which, their names were placed on Exit Control List (ECL).
Hussain Lawai, chairman of Pakistan Stock Exchange, and his associates are accused of opening 29 fake accounts in the Summit Bank and United Bank of Pakistan Limited.
Lawai, Anwar Majeed, Abdul Ghani Majeed and Taha Raza have been arrested following the allegations. INP