Monday, February 6, 2023

Court orders to provide copies of reference to accused in Narowal sports city case

Court orders to provide copies of reference to accused in Narowal sports city case

 AC Judge Ashgar Ali heard the reference filed by the NAB. Ahsan Iqbal former DG sports board, Akhtar Nawaz and Sarfaraz Rasool appeared before court.

The court ordered to provide copies of the reference to the accused, issued summoned notices to other accused in next hearing.

Later, the court  adjourned further hearing into the case till November 30.

Speaking to the journalists outside accountability court, Ahsan Iqbal said that the government and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) filed reference in the Narowal Sports Complex case after two and a half years and it will be a joke if the first international sports project of Pakistan is targeted. "The man can do nothing but laugh at the accusations filed against him in the reference," he added.

A day earlier, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Rawalpindi has filed a reference against PML-N central leader Ahsan Iqbal over ‘misusing powers’ in Narowal Sports city corruption cacse.

 The NAB Rawalpindi chapter filed a reference in an accountability court, nominating Ahsan Iqbal, former director-general (DG) Akhtar Nawaz and Sarfraz Rasool, whereas, Asif Shaikh and Muhammad Ahmed were also named among accused.

According to the reference, Ahsan Iqbal had misused his authority and increased budget of the project from Rs34.75 million to Rs2,994 million. The former minister had illegally hijacked the provincial project which costs Rs3 billion instead of Rs730 million spent by spending funds of the federal government.

Narowal sports city case

Iqbal, a former interior minister, is accused of causing losses worth billions to the national exchequer by initiating the sports city project in his home constituency.

According to NAB officials, the Pakistan Sports Board also illegally used its authority for the construction of the sports city. Fourteen stadiums were meant to be constructed as part of the Narowal Sports City project, which was initiated in 2009.

In April 2018, the Rs2.9 billion project was inaugurated by the then president Mamnoon Hussain. NAB had launched an investigation into the matter the same day it was inaugurated. The bureau said it had received a complaint of embezzlement.