SC directs foreign secretary to ensure Sadiq's extradition
08 March, 2013
ISLAMABAD: Expressing dissatisfaction over NAB's performance regarding the extradition of former OGRA chairman Tauqir Sadiq from Dubai, the Supreme Court has directed the Foreign Office secretary to expedite efforts to bring him back and submit a report in this regard on March 11.
Sadiq is the main accused in Rs 83 billion OGRA corruption scandal. The court also sought a verified copy of the record of Sadiq's case from the accountability court for consideration, after it was informed about the "lukewarm attitude of the accountability court" in the case, as warrant has not been served to Sadiq. A two-member bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Jawwad S Khawaja, expressed surprise over the ignorance of NAB why the extradition process was not being completed and what document was missing in this regard.
It hinted at issuing a coercive order against the NAB officials who had facilitated Sadiq in escaping the country, and also asked Khawaja Haris, amicus curie in the case, to suggest what kind of proceedings could be initiated against the responsible persons. Showing concern over NAB's performance in the matter, Justice Jawwad S Khawaja also observed that NAB had still not filed any reference against those accused of involvement in the illegal appointment of former OGRA chairman Tauqir Sadiq.
It is worth mentioning that the court was informed on January 31 that NAB had prepared a reference against the incumbent prime minister, Raja Pervez Ashraf, and 11 other accused in the matter related to the illegal appointment of Sadiq. During the hearing, the bench also questioned the role of Interpol Islamabad and asked why the extradition process was stopped when the Interpol team landed in Dubai.
It must be noted that Interpol Islamabad wrote a letter to Interpol Abu Dhabi that Shahrukh Jatoi and Tauqeer Sadiq are wanted in a murder case. Accordingly Tauqir Sadiq was entered into the "wanted list" of the UAE on murder charge. The NAB police team immediately made efforts through the embassy to get Sadiq"s status changed from "wanted for murder in Pakistan" in the computer data for criminals of the UAE.
Khawaja Haris, amicus curie, suggested the bench that the Foreign Office should be involved in the matter because the UAE government is of the view that Tauqir Sadiq would be handed over to Pakistani government through the diplomatic channel. Assisting the court over the matter, Khawaja Haris further said that Pakistan is the requesting state in the matter, but the authorities concerned did not know what kind of documents should be produced to the foreign country for ensuring Sadiq's return from the UAE.
Justice Jawwad S Khawaja observed that the bench wanted to understand the procedure under which Tauqir Sadiq could be brought back to the country, saying that he was escorted abroad. He further remarked that court had given a lot of time and opportunities to the NAB, but no progress was shown in the matter. Justice Khawaja asked why had discrepancy in the documents relating to bringing Tauqir Sadiq back to country not removed so far, adding that he cited a report of the Foreign Ministry in the current matter which he said did not mention any communication by the NAB chairman to the Interpol or with the UAE Embassy in Pakistan. The hearing of the case has been adjourned until March 11.