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PM Cousin Tariq Shafi Appears Before JIT

Islamabad (July 02, 2017): Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s cousin, Tariq Shafi, appeared before the Panama Papers case Joint Investigation Team (JIT) on Sunday for around three hours.  

According to the details, Tariq Shafi, cousin of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who is a key member of Sharif Family looking after their businesses has appeared before the Joint Investigation Team (JIT), probing offshore properties of the ruling family.

Talking briefly to the media after the session, Shafi said he answered all the  questions posed by the JIT, which included queries related to the Gulf Steel Mills in Dubai.

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He said he has no idea if he will be summoned again, adding that he did not provide any documents to the JIT.

When asked about the ‘attitude’ of the investigators, Shafi said it was much better [than before]. Shafi was also questioned by the JIT on May 15 for around 12 hours.

The premier’s cousin was driven to the JIT secretariat — the Federal Judicial Academy — by State Water and Power Minister Abid Sher Ali, who is also reportedly related to the premier.The JIT, formed by the Supreme Court, has prepared questionnaires for Tariq Shafi and three children of the prime minister — Maryam Nawaz, Hussain Nawaz and Hassan Nawaz — who would appear before the probe body in next few days.

The sources said the JIT held its meeting on Saturday in which the members reviewed documents provided by the witnesses and prepared questionnaires for all those who would appear and record their statements before the JIT.After first appearance in May, Shafi accused the members of probe body of harassment and filed a formal complaint with JIT Chief Wajid Zia. In the letter, Shafi’s lawyer has stated that a JIT member threatened his client with serious consequences if he didn’t withdraw the affidavit submitted by him in the Supreme Court.

During the hearing of the Panama Papers case, he submitted two affidavits in the apex court — on Nov 12, 2016 and Jan 20, 2017 — confirming receipt of 12 million Dirhams as sale proceeds of the remaining shares of Mian Sharif’s factory in Dubai and delivery of the said amount in cash in installments to Fahad Bin Jassim of Qatar (elder brother of Hamad Bin Jassim). This money later became the source of funds for acquisition of the four Park Lane properties in London, the Supreme Court was told earlier this year.Meanwhile, the premier’s son Hasan Nawaz has been summoned by the JIT on July 3 and his elder brother, Hussain Nawaz, on July 4. Moreover, the premier’s daughter, Maryam Nawaz, is scheduled to appear before the investigators on July 5.

The summons also asked the respondents to bring forth relevant documents related to the Sharif family’s financial assets.The JIT, formed on May 5 in light of the Supreme Court’s April 20 judgment in the Panama Papers case, was given 60 days to complete its probe.

However, since the original deadline was falling on a Friday, and with the JIT taking a day off on Eid, July 10 has been decided as the deadline for the JIT to submit its final report to the court’s special implementation bench.

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