On Monday, Punjab Assembly opposition leader Hamza Shahbaz filed an application in an accountability court demanding his acquittal in Ramazan Sugar Mills reference. Hamza through his lawyer filed the acquittal plea on the basis of the recent amendments made to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) law. He stated that the corruption watchdog filed the reference against him for allegedly getting a drain built with the public funds to facilitate the Ramzan Sugar Mills. The NAB reference fact less and based on mala fide intentions and political grounds, the PML-N leader alleged, adding the bureau instituted the reference at the instigation of the incumbent government. He said the NAB cannot prove these charges against him, pleading with the court to acquit him in the case. Earlier, NAB filed a reference accusing former Punjab chief minister Shehbaz Sharif, his son Hamza Shahbaz and others of causing losses to the national exchequer and misusing authority by sanctioning construction of a drain to facilitate the sugar mills. NAB officials said Shehbaz, being chief minister of Punjab, misused his authority by issuing directives for the construction of a 10-kilometer-long drain in Chiniot primarily to benefit the sugar mill owned by his sons. Shehbaz Sharif and Hamza Shabaz have been accused of fraudulently causing a Rs213 million loss to the national exchequer.