LAHORE: Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah was acquitted on Saturday in a drugs smuggling case filed against him, Geo News reported.
The interior minister was under trial for allegedly trafficking 15kg of heroin. He, however, had rubbished the accusations against him and blamed the PTI government for having a political vendetta against him.
A petition was filed seeking Sanaullah’s acquittal in the case earlier in the day.
Advocate Farhad Shah, during the hearing, said that Assistant Director Imtiaz Ahmed and inspector Ahsan Azam are denying the allegations.
The petition stated that the case has been filed on political grounds, hence, the PML-N leader should be acquitted.
During the hearing, prosecutor Danish Mashkoor said that he had just resigned 15 minutes ago.
“I am no more a prosecutor in this case. I can’t even sign the statements of the witnesses,” he said.
At this, Sanaullah’s counsel Advocate Farhad Shah said that Mashkoor’s resignation wasn’t yet accepted.
However, the remaining prosecutors of the case signed the witnesses’ statements.
While talking to media outside the court this morning, Sanaullah had said that the government’s cases were being closed after “litigation”.
“Why shouldn’t the cases against the members of the coalition government be closed since they are being closed after litigation?” he asked.
Rana Sanaullah case
The case against Sanaullah was filed during the PTI government in which the Anti-narcotics Force (ANF) arrested him on July 01, 2019. He was sent on judicial remand the next day.
The ANF had arrested Sanaullah from near the Sukheke area in Punjab after the registration of the drugs smuggling case against him. ANF officials had told Geo News he was arrested while travelling with his guards to a meeting from Faisalabad to Lahore.
The ANF claimed that it had received a tip-off that the vehicle of the PML-N leader was carrying a heavy quantity of drugs, after which, a raid was conducted. The FIR further stated that when the ANF officials intercepted his vehicle, he and his guards engaged in a scuffle with them.
However, the ANF also claimed that when asked about the presence of drugs in the vehicle, Sanaullah himself pointed towards a blue suitcase placed behind a seat. The ANF claimed in the FIR that he had admitted to the presence of heroin in the suitcase. The drug enforcement agency seized 15 kilogrammes of heroin and weapons from the possession of the accused, the FIR read.
The minister remained behind bars for six months until the Lahore High Court (LHC) granted him bail on December 24, 2019.
This is a developing story and is being updated with more details.