Asif vows to decimate JIT report before SC

841
APP56-10 ISLAMABAD: July 10 – Federal Minister for Water and Power, Khwaja Asif addressing press conference. APP photo by Irshad Sheikh

ISLAMABAD, July 10 (APP): Minister for Defence Khawaja Muhammad
Asif Monday vowed to exercise all legal options and decimate the
joint investigation team (JIT) report on the Panama Papers issue before
the Supreme Court.
“There should be no doubt that we will decimate the
allegations levelled in the JIT report while exercising all the
options during the legal proceedings in the apex court,” he added.
“It is start of the story and we will contest the case at
every stage of the legal process,” he remarked.
Speaking at a press conference along with other ministers
Khawaja Asif said the joint investigation team did not collect
any conclusive evidence and mostly relied on source reports from the
United Kingdom and Dubai, which were not admissible as evidence in
any court of law.
He said the JIT collected no signed document, but only
drafts and worthless papers. It failed to produce any
counter-evidence to prove its case, he added.
The JIT report, he said, laid emphasis on the statement
made by Rehman Malik, which showed lack of quality of its
probe.
He said he had expected better performance from the JIT
as it consisted of bureaucrats and former officials of the
National Accountability Bureau (NAB).
However, investigation of financial matters was a technical
job and the JIT members were not upto the task, he added.
Khawaja Asif said two of the companies mentioned in the JIT
report were not even owned by Hassan Nawaz.
He said Hussain Nawaz remitted the money to the account of
Nawaz Sharif from the profit shown in the balance sheet audited by
a well known international firm so there was no chance of any
illegality.
He said as compared to Pakistan, the money laundering
and tax evasion laws were very strict in the United Kingdom where
the prime minister’s sons were doing business.
He said the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz had faith in the
Supreme Court as it was the same court for which their party
had launched a movement and restored judiciary.
The minister hoped that the Supreme Court would deal with
them according to the law and constitution.
He said their lawyers were thoroughly looking into the JIT
report for submitting a response before the Supreme Court.
Khawaja Asif reminded that in 2012 he had alleged that Imran
Khan invested Zakat money in offshore companies in Muscat and Dubai.
Later, Imran Khan incurred loss on that investment and showed it
as a loss in the accounts of Shaukat Khannum Cancer Hospital, he
added.
He said the PML-N would also take up the case at the forum of
parliament, which was a supreme institution and they would be
victorious.
He said their party braved political attacks in the past as
well. It confronted the military coup of October 12, 1999
and before that its government was removed by Ghulam Ishaq Khan.
“Whenever our mandate was not respected, we came back with
greater majority and increased number of voters,” he added.
He said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was staying in the office
because of the public mandate and it was reflective of the
aspirations of the people.
The prime minister enjoyed the trust of both the parliament
and the voters, he added.