Lahore: An anti-corruption court in Pakistan on Saturday granted a 10-day remand of opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif to the country’s top anti-graft body in a Rs 1,400 crore housing scam, the latest setback to the embattled Sharif family.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB), which arrested the PML-N president on Friday, had sought a 15-day remand to investigate his alleged involvement in the multi-billion rupees corruption case.
Shahbaz, 67, is the younger brother of ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif, 68, who is facing corruption charges in three cases.
The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) president, who was kept in a highly-secured lock-up inside the NAB Lahore office, arrived in court in an armoured vehicle, under heavy security.
A large number of PML-N workers gathered outside the court and chanted slogans against Prime Minister Imran Khan for taking “revenge” from the Sharif brothers.
Accountability Court judge Najamul Hasan accepted the request of the NAB prosecutor’s plea and granted Shahbaz’s physical remand for 10 days to interrogate him in the case.
Shahbaz, who has been accused of misusing his authority, denied corruption charges and told the court that he had saved billions of rupees in different developmental projects during his tenure as Punjab chief minister.
He requested the judge to view his case as political victimisation as not a single rupee corruption against him has been proved.
Shahbaz was allegedly involved in the corruption of Rs 14 billion Ashiana Housing project and Rs 4 billion Punjab Saaf Pani Company scams.
He allegedly cancelled the award of contract of the Ashiana housing project to successful bidder ‘Chaudhry Latif and Sons’ to oblige his “favourite” firm the ‘Lahore Casa Developers’, a proxy group of ‘Paragon City Private Limited’, causing a loss of millions of rupees.
Nawaz termed his brother’s arrest a worst political victimisation.
“Shahbaz Sharif being the chief minister had set great examples of transparency and honesty in all projects.