Pak investigating agency seeks SC's backing for Gilani's arrest in Hajj scam

Islamabad, Jan. 21 (ANI): Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has once again sought the Supreme Court's backing to arrest former premier Yousuf Raza Gilani in connection with the Hajj scam.

Gilani is accused of illegally appointing Rao Shakil and Zain Sukhera, central figures in the multi-billion 2010 Hajj scam, reports The Express Tribune.

The FIA has sent a letter to Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, requesting a 'go-ahead' for the arrests of the former premier and his son Abdul Qadir Gilani. If it gains the CJ's approval, FIA will then seek arrest warrants for the Gilanis from a local court.

A senior investigator said that the case might take a new turn after March. Interior Minister Rehman Malik had directed the agency to stop harassing the Gilani family till March 2013. Once the period expires, investigators may resume action against the accused, he maintained.

Former religious affairs minister Hamid Saeed Kazmi, who spent over 17 months in jail on corruption charges, also wants to record a statement which directly implicates the former premier.

The apex court will resume hearing the Hajj scam case on Monday with special reference to Abdul Qadir's application where a three-member judge bench sought a report from the FIA on his complaint that the agency 'crossed limits' by investigating the authenticity of his degree.

FIA will inform the court that investigators found Gilani guilty of illegally appointing Zain Sukhera as a BPS-20 officer in the Prime Minister's Secretariat without advertising the post. Sukhera has himself admitted before investigators that he obtained fake degrees from the UK. (ANI)

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