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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

How to bring Nawaz Sharif back to Pakistan?

The PTI’s government is deliberating over various options to bring Nawaz Sharif back to Pakistan. However, the bigger question is how will Nawaz’s return impact the incumbent government’s political position in the country hard hit by economic crisis?

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) continues to politicize the issue of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. The former ruling party blames Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) for being inhumane, and doing politics on a serious matter. However, the same party has failed to provide conclusive medical reports of Nawaz in order to get an extension in his bail.

It is worth noting that the government officially declared Nawaz Sharif as a serious patient who needed immediate treatment. However, now the same government is questioning if the former PM was really sick. Zartaj Gul, State Minister and senior leader of PTI, categorically stated that Nawaz Sharif is absolutely fine and is deliberately not returning to Pakistan.

According to the latest development, the Punjab government on Tuesday rejected the application of Nawaz Sharif for extension in bail, stating that the PML-N supremo has failed to provide the required medical reports.

Law Minister Raja Basharat while addressing a press conference alongside provincial health minister Dr Yasmin Rashid and information minister Fayyazul Hassan Chohan said the government had repeatedly asked the PML-N leader to furnish his reports.

“He has not been admitted to any hospital since he went to London for treatment. We have repeatedly asked his physician Dr Adnan Khan about the cardiac procedure. Dr Adnan failed to give any particular date,” Basharat said.

Read more: Who “actually” allowed Nawaz Sharif to leave for London?

The Punjab law minister added that a special board was constituted by the chief minister which kept requesting for fresh reports. “After seven to eight observations, the board asked for new reports, however, the response we received from them was that the reports that had already been sent were conclusive and a decision should be taken on them,” he noted.

The provincial law minister also noted that the government has received no new reports from the Sharif family. “Since no new reports were sent, the Punjab cabinet reached a decision on them and decided not to extend the bail,” Basharat said.

He added, “Rana Sanaullah came on the media a few days ago and said Nawaz would undergo a cardiac procedure on February 24, however, when we asked Dr Adnan, he refused to share a specific date and said the operation would be lined up in the next two to three weeks.”

“Hawa-Khori” or “London-Khori”

It is worth noting that a few days ago, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting, Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan while rebuking PML-N has said that “Reports on spoons and forks clattering in London’s restaurants reach Pakistan more frequent than reports on the “platelets” of Nawaz Sharif “.

Read more: Nawaz Sharif likely to Undergo Cardiac Catheterization

In a tweet pointing a jibe at the former premier, SAPM said “Nawaz Sharif left for London by giving a statement about his chronic ailment. But he has not been admitted to any hospital in London. His medical reports have also assumed the status of “Qatari letter” They say medical reports of Nawaz Sharif cannot be sent unless he is admitted into the hospital”.

Ms. Awan added that whatever game Sharifs were playing at, whatever rules they made, the game still continues. “Send along the menu cards of London’s restaurants with the medical reports [of Nawaz Sharif] so that people [of Pakistan] could assess the situation better,” she said in a tweet.

Ms. Awan was referring to the viral images of the Sharif family in a restaurant having dinner while his sons defended the former premier that Nawaz’s doctors advised “Hawa-Khori”. Speculations started flying in Pakistan as Sharif left the country on the basis of grave health grounds which could not be treated in Pakistan.

Nawaz left for London

It is important to note that the federal cabinet granted in-principle “conditional” approval to remove Nawaz’s name from the ECL. The government had asked the Sharif family to pay Rs.7 billion as surety bonds — equivalent to the fines imposed on him by an accountability court in two corruption cases Al-Azizia Steel Mills and Avenfield properties — in which he was convicted.

The PML-N leadership rejected the offer. While addressing a press conference after consultation meeting of senior party leaders in Lahore, Shehbaz Sharif said that the incumbent government of PTI wanted to take ransom from the Sharif family in the name of indemnity bond.

Read more: Nawaz Sharif Arrives in London: What Guarantees His Return To Pakistan?

The Lahore High Court on Saturday (usually an off day) allowed former premier Nawaz Sharif to travel abroad for four weeks for medical treatment, saying the duration could be extended based on medical reports.

A two-judge bench, comprising Justice Ali Baqar Najafi and Justice Sardar Ahmad Naeem, started hearing the petition at 11 am and after multiple breaks and back and forth, delivered the verdict close to 6 pm.

In the court-approved undertaking, Nawaz assured that he would return “within four weeks” ─ a time frame that was missing in the initial handwritten undertaking.

Nawaz went to London after signing a deal?

There is a growing perception that Nawaz Sharif went to London after signing a deal with the establishment. Those who suspect a deal point towards the past. If the history of Pakistan is any witness to help then it may be true. No politically powerful person in Pakistan’s history has ever been punished in a court of law; convictions even if obtained in lower courts are almost always overturned by superior courts. The system simply does not have the will to punish powerful people- they argue