Islamabad court approves Sindh CM’s exemption plea in Nooriabad power project case

ISLAMABAD (HRNW) – An accountability court in the federal capital approved a plea filed by the Sindh chief minister seeking exemption from appearance in the Nooriabad Power Project reference.

When accountability judge Mohammad Bashir resumed hearing of the case, the chief minister’s lawyer submitted exemption plea for today (Monday).

The lawyer also pleaded the court to adjourn the hearing due to absence of counsel of other co-suspects in the case. He said the lawyers were busy in attending hearings at the Supreme and high courts. The judge adjourned the hearing till June 23.

The anti-corruption watchdog in its reference alleged that the Mr Shah, who was adviser to the CM at that time, issued funds for the power projects in violation of rules. It also alleged that billions of rupees were embezzled in projects related to the Nooriabad Power Company and the Sindh Transmission and Dispatch Company.

In 2012, the Sindh government announced its plan to launch the Nooriabad Power Project but it could not be materialised due to delay in regulatory approvals.

The project was finally launched in August 2014 under a public-private partnership at a cost of Rs13 billion. A 95-km-long, 132kV double-circuit transmission line was laid from Nooriabad to Karachi at a cost of Rs1.95 billion.

NAB alleged that the procedure inflicted a loss of $16 million on the national exchequer.