Shahbaz Sharif arrested by NAB

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Pakistan's Opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif was on Friday arrested by the country's anti-graft body for his alleged involvement in two corruption cases, a senior official said. They claimed that Shahbaz Sharif was arrested to malign PML-N before the by-polls. He will be kept in a highly-secured lock-up inside the NAB Lahore office until his appearance in court, according to Dawn online.

President Shehbaz Sharif was arrested by the country's anti-corruption body on Friday in a Rs 14 billion housing scam case. He is accused of abuse of power during his tenure as the chief minister of Punjab from 2013-2018 by influencing authorities to award contracts for a housing program to a company with which he had political connections.

"He was arrested after he failed to satisfy the investigator for his alleged role in awarding contracts to his favourite firm in violations of rules in the Ashiana Housing scheme and Punjab Saaf Pani Company", NAB spokesperson Nawazish Ali Asim told PTI. "Shahbaz Sharif being the chief minister had set great examples of transparency and honesty in all projects". The PPP chairman said his party had no issues with accountability, but there must be no political victimisation in the name of accountability.

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Sources said that it was also made a decision to hold consultations with all political parties except the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

Speaking to media persons, he said the government was using NAB as its weapon against rivals.

Shahbaz will be presented before an accountability court for a physical remand on Saturday, he said. He has fled to the United Kingdom and the NAB has written to the interior ministry to bring him back from overseas through Interpol.

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In July, Nawaz, his daughter Maryam and Capt (retd) Muhammad Safdar were sentenced to 11 years, eight years and one year, respectively, in prison in the Avenfield properties case related to the purchase of four luxury flats in London through corrupt practices. However, Islamabad's High Court last month suspended the jail term, and granted bail to the former three-time premier.

Nawaz Sharif was ousted from his post previous year by the Supreme Court after Panama Papers leaks revealed he and his family owned several apartments in London. This, Pervaiz Rashid argued, manifested that even the coalition partners were not with Prime Minister Imran Khan.

This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies.

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