The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday rejected a request to hear former president Asif Ali Zardari’s pre-arrest bail plea in New York apartment case in absentia. A division bench of the IHC comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Aamer Farooq heard the pre-arrest bail, while an application for Zardari’s exemption from court attendance on medical grounds was also filed, a private TV channel reported. Zardari had filed a plea for pre-arrest bail after the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) opened an investigation into a New York apartment allegedly owned by Zardari. During the hearing, Zardari’s lawyer Farooq H Naik pleaded that the former president couldn’t appear before the court due to health problems. He prayed the court to grant him bail in NAB inquiry in his absence. He contended that Zardari is under treatment at a private hospital in Karachi. During the hearing, the court questioned how could a bail plea be heard in the absence of Zardari. In response, Naik asked the court to grant two more days for his client to appear before the court. However, the court rejected the request to hear Zardari’s pre-arrest bail plea in absentia. Commenting on the remarks, Justice Aamer Farooq said that the presence of the applicant is necessary in pre-arrest bail cases. Upon hearing the court’s remarks, Naik said that Zardari will be presented before the court on July 7 and will be brought to the premises via an air ambulance. The court agreed to hear the case today. The NAB has opened an investigation into a New York apartment allegedly owned by PPP supremo Asif Ali Zardari. The NAB has informed the former president via a notice that he had not disclosed in Pakistan that he owned an apartment in New York. It also pointed out in the notice that the anti-graft body could not obtain records confirming that any legal sum was sent from Pakistan to buy the flat in New York. Former president Zardari had on Monday approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC) for interim bail in the NAB inquiry pertaining to apartment in New York. The petition was filed through Zardari’s counsel Farook H. Naek Advocate in which Director General NAB Rawalpindi and other had been named as respondents. The petition said that the NAB had served a call up notice to former president on June 15, regarding an inquiry pertaining to apartment at Belaire, 524 East 72nd Street, 37-F Manhattan NYC. The NAB had sent a questionnaire and sought detailed answers till June 24. The petition said that there was a risk of arrest of former president Asif Ali Zardari like past and prayed the court to turn down the call up notice besides granting an interim bail to the petitioner till the final decision of the case. The former president wrote in the petition that he received NAB’s notice on June 15, and sought time to respond to the notice. Zardari said he had requested for more time so that he could gather information about the property. “There is a history of NAB targeting me,” stated the former president in the petition. “I am suffering from several ailments and getting treatment from doctors,” he added.