How Parvez Elahi Allegedly Laundered Money Through His Secret Second Wife

How Parvez Elahi Allegedly Laundered Money Through His Secret Second Wife
Former Punjab chief minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) President Parvez Elahi had secretly married a woman nearly half his age. Anti-graft and money laundering investigators believe that Elahi and the woman are allegedly involved in laundering millions and acquiring assets beyond their declared sources of income.

Having registered a case against her, they now are mulling plans to arrest the woman to further investigations.

Who is Saira Anwar

According to investigators, bank records and close aides, Saira Anwar is a resident of Lahore who runs her interior design studio.

She also dabbles in the gold bullion trade and jewellery for cash.

How did Elahi meet Saira Anwar?

Sources who are close to Elahi, and even part of his core team, told The Friday Times that he had a chance meeting with Saira.

They said that when Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar was serving as the Punjab Governor and had gone on an official trip abroad, Elahi, being the speaker of the Punjab Assembly, had taken oath as the acting governor and for a few days sat in the Governor House.

It was during his brief period in the Governor House that he met with Saira, who at the time was an intern there.

So enamoured was Elahi with Saira that he offered to marry a woman nearly half his age.

“Elahi liked her a lot and later they got married secretly,” one of the core team members of Elahi’s team confirmed to The Friday Times.

Building the case

The Anti-Money Laundering Circle (AMLC) of Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has registered a first information report under section 3 and 4 of AMLA 2010 against Saira Anwar, the alleged second wife of former Punjab chief minister Chaudhry Parvez Elahi, who was reportedly found involved in money laundering by accumulating inexplicable moveable and immovable assets. It is now believed that her arrest is on the cards.

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A senior official, who is part of the investigation team, shared that during the course of enquiry, it came to fore that the said accused lady had opened different individual as well as joint accounts in her name.

“Perusal of the bank record revealed that Saira Anwar has deposited more than Rs175 million since June 2022 into her bank account with the title Saira Anwar maintained at Allied Bank Limited (ABL) Branch DHA Phase-IV Lahore. Following are the details of major cash deposit transactions into her account.

Saira -- the millionaire interior designer

A senior official from FIA told The Friday Times that as per the bank records, the accused has disguised herself as "Interior Designer" and running a business in the name of "Classy Studio".

Moreover, the official said that the source of income declared in the bank was "Foreign Remittance".

List of Saira’s properties

The official further claimed that the money deposited into her accounts do not align with her declared profile and source of income. Furthermore, the following movable as well as immovable properties were traced out in the name of Saira Anwar.

Saira accumulated inexplicable assets beyond her means

It is evident from the above tabulated assets that the accused Sara Anwar has accumulated inexplicable assets in her name which does not match her declared source of income.

Saira refused to explain her position

A senior official who is part of the investigation team told The Friday Times that she was asked to join the enquiry and was given the opportunity to explain her position and source of income in this regard, she did not join the enquiry proceedings.

Reportedly, the above said inexplicable assets as well as cash deposit transactions were accumulated through proceeds of crime.

In light of this information, officials believe Saira Anwar has established several moveable and immovable assets through inexplicable sources of income and allegedly money laundering in her name.

The officials maintained that the complete money trail and details of assets established through crime proceeds will be detailed during the course of investigation.

She has been charged for offenses under sections 3 and 4 AMLA 2010, while the role of other suspects involved and companies involved in money laundering of crime proceeds shall be determined during the investigation.

Elahi parked properties in her name in UK, Switzerland

As per The Friday Times' investigation, people belonging to the inner circle of both Saira and Elahi say that Elahi had acquired properties in Saira’s name in UK and Switzerland and that he (Elahi) traveled to the UK to meet Saira multiple times.

When asked, a close friend of Saira Anwar, on the condition of anonymity confirmed that she is married to Elahi.

Saira invests in gold and jewellery

Saira’s close friend further reveals that apart from what the authorities may have uncovered thusfar, Saira Anwar invests money in gold and jewelry and earns money through it as well.

“Basically, she invests cash proceeds in jewelry and earns money through it, which is one of her major sources of income,” the friend detailed.

Note: The Friday Times has reached out to Saira Anwar for a response to include in this story.

The writer is a senior correspondent at The Friday Times with a focus on politics, economy and militancy.