News & Views

SC to decide bail plea of ex-PM Nawaz Sharif amid tight security

Senior leadership of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) have reached the building of Supreme Court, where former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s plea for bail on medical grounds will be heard on Tuesday.

According to SC spokesperson, a three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Asif Saeed Khosa will take up Nawaz Sharif’s appeal.

Other judges in the bench include Justice Yahya Afridi and Justice Sajjad Ali Shah.A circular has also been issued regarding security measures at the apex court.

Along with Sharif’s counsel Khawaja Haris, a number of PML-N leaders including Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, Pervaiz Rasheed, Rana Sanaullah, Ahsan Iqbal and Marriyum Aurangzeb will attend today’s hearing.

Due to limited seating in Court no.1, special passes will be provided to regulate the entry in court house while lawyers, petitioners, parties and journalists will be allowed to witness the hearing.

According to the press statement, only petitioners and respondents whose cases have been fixed in the top court will be allowed to enter the premises of the Supreme Court building. Journalists and advocates who come to the court regularly will be exempted from passes.

The general public who wish to observe proceedings will be required to contact the SP (Security) for security passes.

Bags and purses of visitors will be searched before entry and mobile phones will be prohibited in Court Room No 1.

Nawaz Sharif is undergoing seven-year imprisonment in the Al-Azizia Mills corruption case. The government claims that he is not ready to be treated in any hospital in the country as he wants to go to London for treatment. The PML-N has accused the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government of indulging in politics over Sharif’s health.

The former premier spent around 10 days in Jinnah Hospital, Lahore, last month. He refused to get further treatment at the hospital after the IHC rejected his petition seeking suspension of his sentence on medical grounds.

Yesterday, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) submitted a petition opposing Sharif’s bail petition and asked that it be rejected.

The SC had issued a notice to NAB during the last hearing of the case asking it to make its stance known.

As per the accountability bureau’s reply submitted on Monday, Sharif’s bail petition contains no indication of him suffering from a fatal illness. NAB has stated that Sharif does not suffer from a life-threatening illness and no medical board has recommended that he undergo surgery.

It also argued that Sharif’s case does not fall in the category of a ‘hardship’ case.

NAB has argued that Sharif wants to make the case that there is a threat to his life and he should be allowed to proceed abroad. It added that the former premier is being given all facilities for treatment.

The accountability watchdog said that if Nawaz is given bail, the former premier will remove himself from the jurisdiction of the court. It said that the IHC had reviewed all these aspects earlier and subsequently rejected Sharif’s bail request.

Additionally, NAB has contended that Sharif’s doctor, Dr Lawrence’s report looks like it is “unverified and fictitious”.

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