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Malik tenders apology in SC over Steel Mills case

01 March, 2013

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ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Rehman Malik on Thursday tendered unconditional apology and placed himself at the mercy of the court for interfering into an investigation about Pakistan Steel Mills affairs in 2009.

In a Civil Miscellaneous Application, the minister told the court that he never intended to interfere in the judicial proceedings but only wanted to enlarge the scope of the inquiry already being conducted by the FIA. A three-member bench in its judgement in Pakistan Steel Mills case on May 16 last year had noted that the interior minister had interfered in the case by transferring former FIA DG Tariq Khosa in December 2009.

Tariq Khosa was heading a team which investigated the corruption in Steel Mills. As the team was making progress in the probe, investigation officer (Tariq Khosa) was transferred.

In the application, Rehman Malik said he had always placed the judiciary, including the apex court, in high esteems and never intended to undermine its dignity and respect and 'neither has any intentions to do so in future'. He tendered unconditional apology 'for the unintended inconvenience, which may have been caused and placed him at the mercy of the court'. "The apology so tendered may kindly be accepted and the show cause notice be withdrawn," the federal minister prayed.

During the hearing, Malik, personally appearing before the bench, said he wanted to argue his case as the counsel failed to explain the things appropriately. The court told him that his case would be taken up after March 16. Talking to reporters at the court premises, Malik said he has always been respecting the courts and would continue to do so in future. "I was trying to enhance the scope of investigations by taking this step," he said.

He further explained, "I initiated the investigation because National Assembly told me to give details. I presented myself to the Supreme Court because I want to gain respect and not embarrassment."

The interior minister said he is proud to expose the names of criminals. He urged Punjab government to take action against Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. He said Punjab government will have to take action against LeJ if we want peace to prevail in the country.

The federal minister said that he should not be compared with Dr Tahirul Qadri and that there was no shame in admitting a mistake after it is proven in the court.

End.

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