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Aleem Khan released from jail

18 May, 2019

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The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday ordered the release of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Abdul Aleem Khan from judicial custody upon submission of surety bonds after he was granted bail earlier this week in a case involving possession of assets beyond means. He was released from Kot Lakhpat jail in the evening.

Aleem Khan, who was arrested in February this year, was remanded to NAB custody for interrogation. After his arrest, the senior PTI minister had submitted his resignation to Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar, saying it was not “morally right” for him to stay in office. On Wednesday, the bench consisting of Justice Ali Baqar Najafi and Justice Sardar Ahmad Naeem had granted him bail.

The court had ordered his release on bail and directed the former senior minister to furnish two surety bonds worth Rs 1 million each.

Aleem Khan was in the Punjab Assembly on a production order when the court announced the bail yesterday. Talking to the media outside the assembly, he said he had no complaints. He said he supported Prime Minister Imran Khan not for any personal gain or office but for the betterment of the country. The PTI leader said he would leave politics for good if corruption of a single penny was established against him.

Aleem Khan used the occasion to question the way the NAB goes about conducting its business. He said the NAB should make any arrest only after something tangible was found against a suspect during investigation.

Aleem Khan faces multiple inquiries, including one involving offshore company Hexam Investment Overseas Ltd; one for owning assets beyond his known sources of income; and inquiries into his involvement in the Park View Housing Society and River Age Housing Society.

NAB officials allege that Aleem Khan had misused his authority as general secretary of the Park View Housing Society and as a former member of the provincial assembly to acquire assets beyond his known sources of income. The bureau had in January 2018 sought the records and details of offshore companies reportedly established in tax havens abroad by Aleem Khan and Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) leader Chaudhry Moonis Elahi. A Mutual Legal Assistance report pertaining to Aleem Khan’s case was provided to NAB Lahore earlier in January this year, following which the PTI leader was summoned and later arrested.

According to NAB officials, Aleem Khan had started a real estate business in which he invested tens of millions of rupees. He bought 900 kanals and another 600 kanals through a company set up for this purpose, A&A Private Ltd. However, according to the bureau, the PTI leader was unable to show the sources of income with which he purchased the land.

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