The National Accountability Bureau challenged on Friday the acquittal of PPP leader Raja Pervaiz Ashraf in the Sahuwal rental power case. He was accused of causing losses to the national exchequer by misusing his power as the former federal water and power minister.
The acquittal of other people named in the case, including Ismail Qureshi, Shahid Rafi, Shaukat Tareen, Tariq Basharat Cheema, Muhammad Salim Arif, Chaudhry Abdul Qadeer, Iqbal Ali Shah, Wazir Ali Bhaiyo, and Razi Abbas, has been challenged too.
An accountability court in Islamabad gave them a clean chit in the case on June 25 and ruled that no corruption charges were proven against them.
NAB, in its petition, said that it was directed by the Supreme Court on March 30, 2012 to proceed against the people named in the case over “misuse of authority”. They awarded a 150MW rental power contract in Sialkot’s Sahuwal to Techno Engineering Services causing a loss of Rs20.43 million to the national exchequer.
Ashraf, who was the minister for water and power in 2009, authorised the summary illegally, NAB claimed, adding that he obtained approval from the Economic Coordination Committee and the federal cabinet for an increase in the down payment to rental power companies from 7% to 14%.
The prosecution produced “confidence inspiring evidence on oral account as well as through document evidence but the trial court did not discuss or analyse the intrinsic value of the evidence”, the petition said.
It added that the “trial court has altogether ignored the fact that the respondents deliberately, intentionally, premeditatedly cause a huge loss to the national exchequer”.