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Malik exempted from personal appearances at anti-graft court

A Pakistani anti-corruption court exempted Interior Minister Rehman Malik from personal appearances in connection with a graft case against him after he submitted an intelligence report that said he faced threats to his life during such hearings.

world Updated: Jan 30, 2010 17:05 IST

A Pakistani anti-corruption court on Saturday exempted Interior Minister Rehman Malik from personal appearances in connection with a graft case against him after he submitted an intelligence report that said he faced threats to his life during such hearings.

Over the past few weeks, Malik had to appear personally in courts in Rawalpindi, Karachi and Peshawar after a slew of cases against him were revived in the wake of the Supreme Court's order cancelling a graft amnesty that benefited him.

During Malik's appearance before an anti-corruption court here this morning, his counsel presented to the judge an intelligence report that cited threats to the minister's life during appearances in court. The court then exempted Malik from appearing before it in person in connection with a case related to alleged wrong-doing in a state-run refinery in the 1990s.

Malik has been accused of having a role in a 1995 deal to sell 50,000 tonnes of bitumen to a private company at rates lower than market prices.

Malik's brother-in-law headed the refinery at the time and the prosecution has alleged that the deal benefited him. However, Malik has claimed that it is a case of political victimisation as the complaint was registered in 1996 after the fall of the government led by his Pakistan People's Party. The judge later adjourned the matter till February 12.