Former finance minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Ishaq Dar, who is in a self-imposed exile after corruption cases were filed against him, has said that he and his wife own only a single property that’s located in Pakistan.
Dar made these comments during his appearance in BBC show, HardTalk.
During the show, the host asked Dar: “Is it your contention that the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has no integrity? To this, Dar responded that NAB has lost its integrity. “It is an institution that has been used against political opponents.”
Dar said the prime allegation in the Panama Papers Joint Investigation Team report on which the Supreme Court directed NAB to file a reference against him was that he didn’t file his tax returns in Pakistan for 20 years i.e. 1981-2001. Dar said as a chartered account, he had never missed filing his tax returns while living in the UK and North America, as he called these “blatant allegations”.
At this the host asked Dar about the number of properties owned by his family. The PML-N leader responded, “It’s all in my tax returns.”
Upon the insistence of the host, he said: “I have my main residence in Pakistan which has been taken over by this regime… I haven’t got too many properties.”
“How many properties do you and your family own,” the host asked him again. At this, Dar said: “One.” At this, the show host asked him about the news reports in the Pakistan press that claim that the former PML-N minister owned multiple properties in and outside Pakistan. “You are sitting in London and you don’t own anything here,” the host asked Dar.
Dar responded that he doesn’t own any property in London or anywhere else as claimed by the media reports.
However, he went on to admit that his sons recently acquired a villa in Dubai. “They are adult and are in the business for the past 17 years,” he clarified.
Dar, 69, is currently in London, “undergoing medical treatment”. He is absconding from several cases in Pakistan since 2017 and has been declared a proclaimed offender by the courts. He is facing charges of accumulating assets beyond known sources of income.