The National Accountability Bureau has arrested Agha Siraj Durrani, the speaker of the Sindh Assembly, over charges of owning assets beyond means.
Earlier in the day, the PPP leader approached the Supreme Court for pre-arrest bail. His request was, however, declined. The top court instructed Durrani to surrender before NAB
At a hearing on Friday, a three-member bench rejected the plea of Durrani's lawyer to surrender before a trial court and instructed the politician to surrender before the bureau.
"[The] Supreme Court cannot conduct a hearing on this plea without the high court's verdict," Justice Mansoor Ali Shah ruled. "You must have been in jail if SHC had rejected your bail plea. Why should the court offer you leniency when you didn't surrender to the police?"
The court then adjourned the hearing for a week.
The PPP leader was arrested in Islamabad in 2019 by NAB Karachi. He has been accused of accumulating assets worth Rs1.6 billion, which according to NAB are beyond his known sources of income.
In October, the Sindh High Court rejected Durrani's bail. The court, on the other hand, granted bail to the eight people accused in the case, including Durrani’s wife Naheed, daughters and sons.
After the orders were passed, NAB raided his residence to arrest him but failed to do so because of resistance from the politician's guards. Durrani then filed an appeal in the apex court.
The PPP leader was the Sindh local government minister from 2008 to 2013 and then appointed Sindh Assembly speaker in 2013, a position he holds to date.