Court stops the auction of Ishaq Dar's Lahore property

Stay order issued on NAB court's verdict

The house of Ishaq Dar's wife, Tabassum Dar, is not being auctioned off anytime soon as the Islamabad High Court has issued a stay order on its auction.

A two-member bench, comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Lubna Saleem Pervaiz, announced the verdict on Tuesday. It has suspended an accountability court's November 7, 2019 verdict in which it rejected the plea of Dar's wife.

The court has issued notice to NAB and asked for a reply by February 13.

Advocate Qazi Misbah appeared on the petitioner's behalf. He said that Ishaq Dar had gifted the house in Lahore's Gulberg to his wife on February 14, 1989.

NAB had seized the house and its custody was given to the Punjab government, the lawyer told the court.

On October 2, 2019 an accountability court ordered the auction of Dar’s assets and confiscation of his bank accounts. The step was taken because he has been absconding in a corruption case. He went to London to seek medical treatment and still hasn’t returned, NAB had told the court.

Tabassum Ishaq Dar, the PML-N leader’s wife, had challenged the court’s decision and claimed that Hajvery House belongs to her. She argued that her husband had gifted her the house on February 14, 1989, therefore it cannot be confiscated.

Related: NAB has failed to bring Ishaq Dar back to Pakistan, says the chief justice

NAB, on the other hand, had argued that the house cannot be handed over to his wife and refuted her claims that the house was gifted to her. The bureau said that the property could not be returned to her as she did not possess any evidence to prove her gift claims. It said the house was purchased by Dar in 1988 and the land department’s records show that he is still the owner of the property.

Dar’s other properties include three plots in Lahore’s A-Falah Housing Society, six acres of land in Mauza Milot, a two-kanal plot in Islamabad’s Parliamentarian Enclave, three Land Cruisers, two Mercedes Benz and one Toyota Corolla.

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