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Panamagate JIT report has several flaws: Ishaq Dar

12 July, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Tuesday said the report of Panamagate Joint Investigation Team (JIT) would remain incomplete until the tenth volume was made public, and that he would present money trail in court for funds used to purchase items ranging from a needle to a Mercedes car.

Dar addressed a press conference in Islamabad to respond to the growing pressure and levelling of accusation against him following the JIT report that was made public and filed in the top court the other day. Dar said that he had made his children self-sufficient in businesses back in 2003.

He urged the political opponents of the ruling party to let the system work, claiming that they were hindering the progress of Pakistan. He denounced the alleged ‘court hearings’ being held in the public following submission of the JIT report. Dar claimed that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had hauled documents from his house after martial law was imposed in 1999.

He said that JIT had told him on July 3 during his appearance that his tax returns were not filed. The minister said that he forwarded the record to the probe committee on July 7, whatever he could gather from NAB.

He said that he gave at least Rs 80.61 million in charity to his entity known as Hajveri Trust. He said that he had earned at least £4.9 million in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He further laid out that according to his will, whatever he had earned would go to orphans.

The finance minister urged patience over final report submitted by the Panama case JIT in the Supreme Court, claiming that a narrative was being shaped against the prime minister since the submission of the report.

Dar claimed that the Panamagate JIT report has several flaws, consisted of unsigned documents and even copies. He urged opposition parties to demonstrate patience for they also did so at the time of “Dharna-I and Dharna-II”.

The minister noted that no offshore company had the name of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as its owner, lamenting that efforts were being made to shape a narrative (against the PM) since the submission of the report in the SC. Dar said the system should be allowed to function, adding, “There have been courts functioning outside the courts.”

“The JIT said on July 3 that I didn’t send tax returns from 1981 and 2003. I told them that I will take action against Federal Board of Revenue and ask them to inform me if they were not provided record by the FBR,” he said. The minister said his tax filer, Zia Babri, told him the NAB had taken away all record in Musharraf’s tenure.

“Similarly, I was told that my returns from 2003 to 2008 were not received, but I have the receipt of tax returns submitted to the probe team. The record, I received from NAB on July 7, was also submitted to the JIT, of which too I have the receipt.”

Dar said he would submit record and offer to get it audited from an international firm. “Neither I was asked anything, nor a reply was sought from me, and a finding was written in the report.”

Speaking on the occasion, Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique called the report of JIT biased and said it appeared to have been made in 2.5 years and not 60 days. He said Imran Khan was the main conspirator against PML-N while several directors were outside Pakistan. He also poured criticism on other opposition parties, including Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), advising them to examine their own corruption in previous regime.

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