NAB in focus

Pakistan Observer

THE National Accountability Bureau (NAB) was once again under the focus of the top court on Wednesday when it observed that the anti-graft watchdog always punishes people accused of petty offences and leaves untouched the principal accused named in corruption references. A three-judge bench made the observation during the hearing of a bail plea filed by Dinshaw Hoshang Anklesaria, a businessman facing corruption references in the Bahria Icon Towers case, wondering why those involved in mega corruption remained at large, but those who committed petty offences were arrested and sent behind bars.
It has rightly been pointed out by the presiding officer of the bench that NAB’s performance was being questioned at different forums, the Senate among them, adding that the Bureau should have the courage to face all odds instead of returning favours to those who had extended favours to them. The NAB is surely under pressure as it lacks the capacity to handle the number of cases it has initiated and in some areas it has no special expertise to investigate the cases in a fair manner. It is because of flaws in investigations that in the majority of cases the accused finally go scot free, while in the case of others, the charges are white-washed under the questionable clause of plea-bargain. It is time that lacunae in the working of the Bureau are removed through exhaustive discussions at the forum of the Parliament to give a boost to the process of accountability.

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