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    Monday, 25 June 2018

    PML-N candidate contesting polls against Chaudhry Nisar taken into custody

    The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) arrested on Monday Engineer Qamarul Islam Raja – a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) candidate contesting against party’s disgruntled leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan from Rawalpindi’s NA-59 constituency – in Saaf Pani scam.
    Along with Qamar, the bureau has also arrested former secretary P&D Punjab Waseem Ajmal Chaudhry in the case. Chaudhry has also served as chief executive officer (CEO) of Saaf Pani Company in the past.
    A spokesperson for the national corruption watchdog has confirmed the development.
    Raja was nominated as PML-N’s candidate from NA-59 and PP-10 on Sunday. Former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan is contesting from both these constituencies.
    Raja was elected as an MPA on PML-N ticket from PP-5 (now PP-10) in the 2013 general elections. He was one of the members of the Board of Directors of Punjab Saaf Pani Company. On May 11, 2018, Qamarul Islam was grilled by a combined investigation team of NAB Lahore in connection with ongoing inquiry into the scam.
    On June 4, former Punjab chief minister Shehbaz Sharif was also appeared before the NAB investigators in the scam.
    Saaf Pani Company is one among 56 public limited companies formed by the Punjab government soon after assuming power in the province in 2013. All these companies are now under the NAB’s radar.
    Earlier in April, the bureau had arrested four accused involved in Saaf Pani scam including chief technical officer in Saaf Pani Company Dr Zahirud Din, consultant engineer Muhammad Saleem Akhtar, chief procurement officer Nasir Qadir Bhaddar and managing director  Masood Akhtar.
    After a change of hearts, the PML-N on Sunday decided to field party candidates against Chaudhry Nisar who announced to contest next general elections independently. Observers are of the opinion that Qamar is a strong candidate against Nisar.
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