The interior ministry suffered another blow in the scandalous money laundering case, as the Sindh High Court (SHC) once again quashed on Thursday the notification regarding placement of model Ayyan Ali’s name on the exit control list (ECL).
Headed by Justice Ahmed Ali M Sheikh, the division bench also directed the interior ministry to immediately remove the model’s name from the ECL after June 9. The two judges ruled that their order will take effect on June 9, providing an opportunity to the federal government to appeal to the Supreme Court (SC) against this order, if it desired so.
The model had approached the court seeking contempt of court proceedings against the interior ministry, the federal investigation agency and others for placing her name on the ECL hours after it was removed on the SHC’s order. Ali, who was released on bail but still faces trial, was arrested at Islamabad airport when the Customs authorities allegedly recovered $506,800 from her possession.
On March 7 this year, the court had struck down an order of the interior ministry regarding restricting Ali from going abroad and allowed her to travel out of country. The SC had also upheld the SHC order on April 13 on a state appeal against the high court order.
Ali’s lawyers, advocates Latif Khosa and Abdul Qadir Mandhokhel, argued that despite superior courts orders, the petitioner’s name was again placed on the ECL, which amounted to deliberately violating the court’s order.
While announcing their order that was reserved on May 25, the SHC bench quashed the interior ministry’s notification and ordered taking off the petitioner’s name from the ECL. While disposing of the contempt plea, the bench further directed the interior ministry to ensure compliance of this order by June 9 when this order will take effect.