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Pandora Papers: Pak PM Imran Khan's inner circle exposed along with over 700 Pakistanis

According to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin, Minister for Water Resources Moonis Elahi, Senator Faisal Vawda, and the family of Minister for Industries and Production Khusro Bakhtiar, among others, had links with offshore companies.

Pandora Papers Pak PM Imran Khan's inner circle exposed along with over 700 Pakistanis gcw
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Islamabad, First Published Oct 4, 2021, 9:29 AM IST
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Over 700 Pakistanis, including several ministries and senior members of Prime Minister Imran Khan's inner circle, have been named in the Pandora Papers investigation, which uncovered financial secrets kept by high-profile persons across the world. According to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin, Water Resources Minister Moonis Elahi, Senator Faisal Vawda, and the family of Industries and Production Minister Khusro Bakhtiar, among others, had links with offshore companies.

The disclosures have also implicated former army officers, businesspeople 'including Axact's CEO Shoaib Sheikh', and media firm owners. 

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According to the study, important members of Prime Minister Khan's inner circle, including cabinet ministers, their families, and big financial backers, have secretly operated through many corporations and trusts containing hidden millions. 

Over 600 reporters from 150 media organisations in 117 countries contributed to the Pandora Papers investigation over a two-year period, resulting in 11.9 million files comprising 2.94 terabytes of sensitive material. It should be emphasised that creating and declaring an offshore business that is not involved in any criminal activities is lawful. Concerning Prime Minister Khan's Lahore house, 2 Zaman Park, Pakistani investigative reporter Umar Cheema stated that the inquiry was organised by the ICIJ, who submitted questions to the PM's spokesman. 

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According to sources, the 'Pandora Papers' leak will reveal more financial secrets of politicians and public figures than the Panama Papers did and give more than twice as much information on the ownership of offshore businesses. The Panama Papers were based on documents from the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, which disclosed the offshore holdings of 140 politicians, public figures, and sports figures. 

The Pandora Papers investigation is larger in scope, and the disclosures concerning politicians and public officials are considerably more extensive than what was previously made public. More than 400 people from Pakistan were named in the Panama Papers, including members of then-prime leader Nawaz Sharif's family. In July 2017, a five-member Supreme Court unanimously voted to remove Sharif from office in the Panamagate controversy.

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