Official probing Pakistan PM found dead

National Accountability Bureau's assistant director Kamran Faisal was assisting Asghar Khan in investigating a graft case involving the Pakistan prime minister.

ISLAMABAD: An officer who was investigating a corruption case against the Pakistan Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf has been found dead on Friday in the country's capital, police said.

National Accountability Bureau's assistant director Kamran Faisal was assisting Asghar Khan in investigating a graft case involving the Pakistan prime minister.

Inspector General of Police, Bin Yamin, stated that according to the initial investigation, Faisal apparently committed suicide.

He said a table placed in Faisal's room was moved, which suggests that he allegedly committed suicide by hanging himself to the ceiling.

Faisal's colleagues said he was facing a lot of pressure ever since the Supreme Court ordered arrest of Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf and had been sharing his concerns with the colleagues.

Faisal was the only child to his parents. His body will be sent to his native village, Mian Channu.

Pakistan Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered the arrest of Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf in connection with alleged kickbacks in transactions involving rental power plants when he served as power minister.

But the chief of the Pakistani government's anti-corruption department rejected the court order to arrest the prime minister, television channels reported, providing some relief to a government gripped by political turmoil.

Fasih Bokhari, head of the National Accountability Bureau, told the Supreme Court that investigations of the allegations against Ashraf were incomplete,

The court asked Bokhari to produce case records so that it could decide whether there is enough evidence to prosecute the prime minister and other officials accused in the case.

But fresh troubles may be brewing for the government, which has been heavily criticised for its failure to strengthen the economy, fight militancy and eradicate poverty.

The Supreme Court has admitted a petition filed against Sherry Rehman, Islamabad's ambassador to the United States and a well-known member of the ruling Pakistan People's Party, accusing her of committing blasphemy.

Court documents show that the police have been directed to investigate the allegations. Rehman has faced death threats from militants for calling for reforms of Pakistan's anti-blasphemy law, which has been condemned by human rights groups.

The administration is already facing pressure from fiery cleric Muhammad Tahirul Qadri, who has fired up thousands of protesters camped outside parliament with his calls for the resignation of political leaders and electoral reforms.

Qadri, who backed a military coup in 1999, is calling for the immediate resignation of the government and the installation of a caretaker administration in the run-up to elections due in the next few months. (Agencies)

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