Ex-ISI chief submits statement on bribing of politicians
ISLAMABAD, July 26: Former director general of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt-Gen (retd) Asad Durrani said in the Supreme Court on Thursday that he would provide in a sealed cover the names of officials involved in the clandestine operation of bribing politicians in the 1990s.
A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry is hearing a petition filed in 1996 by Tehrik-i-Istiqlal chief Air Marshal Asghar Khan requesting the court to look into allegations that the ISI had financed a number of politicians in the 1990 elections by dishing out Rs140 million to create the now defunct Islami Jamhoori Ittehad (IJI) and prevent Benazir Bhutto’s PPP from winning the polls. The petition was based on an affidavit of Gen Durrani. At the last hearing on July 16, the court had asked Gen Durrani to place on record a concise statement, supporting evidence or affidavits explaining details about the persons who had been allegedly provided certain amounts under the directions of then army chief Gen (retd) Aslam Beg and the names of people who had been given the amount after receiving it from Ajlal Haider Zaidi who was heading a team in the presidency set up by then president the late Ghulam Ishaq Khan to monitor the elections.
In a statement submitted to the court, Gen Durrani said the amount distributed by him was approximately Rs70 million out of a total of Rs140 million. The remaining amount was deposited in a special ISI fund.
He said he had assigned the job of distributing the money to certain officers of the Military Intelligence who were cognisant that the money was for the election purpose and after doing so they had informed him about its distribution.
Gen Durrani said the names of these officers and some of the classified documents available with him would be submitted to the court in a sealed cover, but added that these should be treated as classified.
The court will take up the case on Monday.