ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) arrested Captain (retd) Safdar, the son-in-law of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, from outside Islamabad airport, shortly after he returned from London along with his wife Maryam Nawaz late Sunday.
A six-member NAB team waited outside Rawal lounge of the airport for the arrest of Capt (retd) Safdar, as the airport authorities stopped them from entering the lounge.
Safdar’s arrest came minutes after Maryam Nawaz left the airport premises alone amid cheers by scores of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) workers, who gathered outside the airport.
Maryam, after having left the airport, arrived at the residence of Chaudhry Muneer – her daughter’s father-in-law in Islamabad’s F-6 sector.
A number of PML-N leaders including Asif Kirmani, Marriyum Aurangzeb, Marvi Memon, Maiza Hameed and Tariq Fazal Chaudhry were also present at the airport.
The PML-N activists protested against the arrest of Captain (retd) Safdar outside the airport. They chanted slogans in favour of the party leadership and kept the way for the vehicle, in which Safdar was being taken to NAB’s regional office in Islamabad, blocked for quite some time.
The workers seemed adamant not to let the vehicle pass through, despite repeated calls by the party leaders present on the spot. Raged activists thumped the vehicle repeatedly, while a few also laid down before it.
They, however, backed off after PML-N leader Dr. Asif Kirmani conveyed leadership’s directives to them to not block the way of NAB officials.
Confirming the arrest of Safdar, Kirmani said Maryam Nawaz and Captain (retd) Safdar came as per the schedule, adding that Maryam Nawaz left the airport premises, while Captain (retd) Safdar was taken into custody by NAB officials.
“He is in high spirits,” the PML-N leader said, while speaking to media. “I kept discussing Begum Kulsoom Nawaz’s health with him.”
He said they didn’t call the workers, and the activists came to the airport out of their own will. “I tried to convince them, but we get to see some emotional scenes in such cases. However, they left the way open for NAB officials after being apprised of the leadership’s directives.”
Asked about their next course of action, Kirmani said they would take whatever legal way they found.
It has been learnt that Safdar will remain under custody of the NAB until he is presented before the accountability court on Monday morning.
It is pertinent to note here on October 2, Judge Mohammad Bashir of the accountability court, while hearing corruption references against the Sharif family, had issued non-bailable arrest warrants for Safdar, Hussain Nawaz and Hasan Nawaz, and bailable warrants for Maryam.
Given the non-bailable arrest warrants, the anti-graft body had decided to arrest Safdar upon reaching Islamabad airport, according to sources. A special cell was also vacated for him at the NAB’s Rawalpindi office.
He was however whisked to the NAB office i.