Media ban in Dar graft trial, leaves journalists puzzled
ISLAMABAD: Security officials on Wednesday barred journalists from entering the accountability court premises during graft case proceedings against Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, raising questions over the motive behind impeding media coverage of the case.
The main entrance to the accountability court was shut for journalists, advocates and other people, creating chaos.
Subsequently, after being kept waiting for around 20 minutes outside the building, the federal minister was allowed to enter via backdoor.
Raising concerns over the unwarranted measures, the media men said that they did not receive any orders from the relevant court.
The move was witnessed when the accountability court was indicting Dar in the National Accountability Bureau (NAB)’s corruption reference.
Meanwhile, the lawyers were also stopped as the main gate of the court was closed for entrance; however, they managed to enter the premises by jumping over the gate.
During the proceedings, the accountability court indicted Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in a reference filed against him by the anti-graft body for having assets disproportionate to his known sources of income.
Judge Muhammad Bashir read out charges against the minister, which he denied and opted to contest them.
The court directed the prosecution side to produce two of its witnesses on next hearing to record their depositions and adjourned the hearing until Oct 4.
Accompanied by State Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication, Anusha Rahman, Barrister Zafarullah, and Tariq Fazal Chaudhry, Dar reached the court amid tight security.
The finance minister had appeared before the court after it issued bailable warrants for his arrest. He had submitted a surety bond worth Rs1 million to seek bail in the case.