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Court rejects Sharif`s plea for joint hearing


Islamabad [Pakistan], November 8 (ANI): An accountability court in Islamabad on Wednesday rejected an application filed by ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif for clubbing together the three references filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) against him and his family.

The court had reserved its ruling on Sharif's application on Tuesday after hearing arguments from both - the defence counsel and the NAB prosecution.

According to The Dawn, the court rejected the request while hearing the corruption cases against Sharif and his family members.

After the court's judgement, Sharif was called to the rostrum and the judge read out the charges against him in which he was indicted separately in each of the three references.

However, he pleaded "not guilty" to all the charges.

The former prime minister expressed his concern on the time period given to each case.

However, the judge pitched for the simultaneous hearing, so that the cases can be concluded in the given time frame.

Following the indictment, the court summoned the prosecution witnesses - Sidra Ansoor of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan and Jahangir Ahmed of Federal Board of Revenue - to appear at the next hearing.

The next hearing will take place on November 15.

Last Friday, Sharif's lawyer Khawaja Haris filed a fresh application before the court requesting it to club the three accountability references against him.

The accountability court judge during Friday's hearing said he would have to review the IHC's orders before he provided a detailed response on the matter.

The court did not receive the IHC's order and subsequently decided to adjourn the hearing.

The Pakistan Supreme Court had asked the NAB to file references against the Sharif family in connection with their Avenfield and other properties on July 28 and directed the trial court to decide the references within six months. (ANI)

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