ISLAMABAD, Dec. 27 (Xinhua) -- The Pakistani government has decided to bar former president Asif Ali Zardari from leaving the country as he is suspected in an alleged money laundering case, a cabinet minister said on Thursday.
Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry told reporters that the federal cabinet decided that Zardari, co-chairman of the opposition Pakistan Peoples Party, and 171 other people cannot leave the country as investigation is pending against them in different corruption cases.
The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in a report has found that Zaradri and his sister Faryal Talpur were among over 30 people who have transferred billion of rupees abroad through fake bank accounts. However, Zardari and his parry have rejected the report as "packs of lies."
Zardari and his sister have appeared on several occasion before the banking court in connection with the charges and have also secured bail from the court to avoid arrest.
Fawad said the federal cabinet took the important initiative as some people involved in the fake accounts and money laundering case are not taking a report of the the investigation seriously.
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Thursday dismissed the report and said this is an "attempt to misguide the courts."
In another development, the government has approached the Election Commission of Pakistan to disqualify Zardari as member of the parliament for "hiding property in the United States."
A provincial lawmaker of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party Khurrum Sher Zaman had filed a petition against Zardari.
Zaman said Zardari had not shared details of the property in the United States with the election commission, which was required for taking part in elections.
The election commission's officials on Thursday accepted the petition for initial hearing, according to reports. The initial hearing is expected to be held next week.