LAHORE: A Pakistani court on Thursday stopped the Federal Investigation Agency from taking action against Prime Minister Imran Khan’s friend Jehangir Tareen and the family of PML-N president Shahbaz Sharif in a sugar scam worth over Rs 400 billion.
A division bench comprising Justice Shahid Karim and Justice Sajid Mahmood Sethi of Lahore High Court struck down the case filed by the Security and Exchange Commission of Pakistan against JDW Sugar Mills and Farooqi Pulp Mills of Tareen and Al-Arabia Sugar Mills of Shahbaz’s family on the basis of “procedural unfairness and for being a dictated exercise”.
“SECP can initiate proceeding afresh according to law,” the bench said.
Tareen and Shahbaz had approached the LHC against multiple actions of the SECP and FIA in the sugar scam.
The court observed that the FIA call-up notices to the owners and staff of the sugar mills in question do not make a reference to the sugar inquiry commission‘s report and proceed on the basis of information available with the investigation team regarding money laundering and financial/corporate fraud.
The petitioners said the inquiry commission had made baseless allegations of committing corporate fraud on their sugar mills.
Tareen, a close confidant of prime minister Khan, had left for London soon after the government made its much-trumpeted sugar inquiry commission report public last year that revealed the names of different players, including Tareen and Khusro Bakhtiar, who had benefited from the sugar crisis.
Tareen returned last week and said that he had left for London for his medical treatment and duly informed the government about that.
“I have nothing to hide. My business is clean and transparent and there are no worries,” Tareen added.