KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court on Saturday allowed Dr Asim Hussain to leave Pakistan for two weeks to get medical treatment abroad.
The court permitted the former minister to leave the country following the submission of Rs 2 million as surety and ordered him to return to the country within two weeks.
Earlier this month, Dr Hussain, who was arrested by the Rangers on August 26, 2015, was released after 19 months of incarceration.
A request to remove Former Petroleum Minister Dr Asim Hussain’s name from the Exit Control List (ECL) was filed in the Sindh High Court on April 12.
Dr Hussain’s lawyer requested the SHC to allow his client to travel abroad for a surgery for his back ailment.
According to the petition filed in court, a medical board advised the former minister to travel abroad for treatment. The petition further stated that Dr Hussain took an appointment with a doctor based in London for April 20 and any delay in treatment might further deteriorate his health.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB), Ministry of Interior, Home Department Sindh, and Inspector General of Police Sindh were made respondents to the request.
A close aide of former president and PPP Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari, Dr Hussain faces corruption references pertaining to land fraud amounting to Rs.9.5 billion, money laundering amounting to Rs 3 billion, misuse of authority, and criminal breach of trust through a Rs 450 billion-fertilizer scam.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) also accused Dr Hussain of illegally awarding gas contracts to a privately-managed gas processing company, Jamshoro Joint Venture Limited (JJVL). The contract, which was awarded without an open auction, allowed the private company to process gas from government-owned gas fields, resulting in a loss of Rs 17.338 billion to the national exchequer.
On November 1 last year, the Sindh High Court had also granted bail to Dr Asim Hussain along with Pak Sarzameen Party leader Anis Qaimkhani, Muttahida Qaumi Movement leader Abdul Rauf Siddiqui, Pasban leader Usman Moazam, along with Karachi Mayor Waseem Akhtar, and Pakistan People’s Party leader Qadir Patel in a case pertaining to charges of harboring terrorists and providing them with medical treatment.