NAB Arrests PML-N Stalwart Ahsan Iqbal In Sports Complex Corruption Case
By Our Web Reporter
RAWALPINDI– The troubles for Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz seem to be growing with each passing day as the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) detained Ahsan Iqbal, one of the staunch leaders in Nwaz-led party, on Monday in connection with Narowal Sports City project.
Ahsan Iqbal was arrested from the anti-corruption watchdog’s Rawalpindi chapter’s office where he had appeared to record his statement in the case regarding alleged corruption in NSC project.
NAB confirmed the arrest in a statement, adding that a team of doctors has been called for the PML-N MNA’s medical assessment. Iqbal will be produced before an accountability court tomorrow, where NAB will ask for his physical remand.
Iqbal is accused of using funds of the federal government and the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) for a sports city being established in Narowal — a multi-billion project.
The PML-N leader had said he had submitted documents related to his income and expenditures to Rawalpindi NAB. The opposition leader had already replied to a questionnaire given to him by the bureau in connection with the same case.
Speaking to the media before heading to NAB, Iqbal had said that when PML-N came to power in 2013, he, as planning minister, had taken up several projects that were incomplete and NSC was one of them.
He said that before Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) came to power, the project of NSC was 90 per cent complete, but the present government had turned it into ruins.
“In fact, NAB should take those people to task who are responsible for the destruction of a national asset [NSC],” he added.
The PML-N leader said that when he became a federal minister, the NSC project was in the doldrums and like many other stalled projects, the PML-N government revived it and took it to near completion.
He said that the AstroTurf (artificial grass) was imported for the ground in the sports city. It was to be laid within six months.
“The present government stalled the project and did not place AstroTurf. As a result, the artificial grass has become useless.”
Following his arrest, party spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb lashed out at the government and NAB and said that the party will “continue to speak like this”. She said that Iqbal’s “fault is that he is Nawaz Sharif’s companion, speaks the truth and loves the people of Pakistan”.
“Do what you want to do. Arrest someone else, threaten someone else. PML-N is Nawaz Sharif’s party. It does not bow, it doesn’t get scared and doesn’t sell [itself].”
“All those who are capable and truthful are in jail today,” she said. Aurangzeb demanded NAB to look into the Peshawar BRT project, which is lying in the doldrums.
“If anyone has misused authority, it is Imran Khan,” she declared.
“PML-N will not hand over this country to incompetent people. This country belongs to the 220 million people of the country.”
In response to a question, Aurangzeb said: “Cooperating with NAB means to stay quiet, to not speak the truth about this government […] Yes, Ahsan Iqbal did not cooperate, will not cooperate. PML-N will not cooperate.”