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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Like Father Like Daughter: Maryam Nawaz afraid of courts in Pakistan?

Political commentators believe that Maryam’s failure to seek any concession for her convicted father from the legal system in Pakistan has prompted her to be more aggressive. However, some analysts think that the fear of being tried or getting convicted in the leaked video case is what is urging Maryam Nawaz to approach masses.

News Analysis |

Maryam Nawaz, vice president of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), slammed the incumbent government on Sunday and warned that “the government is taking its last breath”. She demanded justice for her convicted father and repeatedly pointed out that the government is afraid of her political conviction.

Moreover, before leaving for her rally in Faisalabad, the PML-N leader told the media at Jati Umra residence that she wanted to tell the traders, industrialists, workers and laborers of Faisalabad that Maryam Nawaz was coming to them. She had recently announced the launch of protest rallies across the country from July 21 to seek ‘justice for her father; for the rule of law and freedom of expression’.

Maryam Nawaz was released on bail after being convicted by an accountability court in Islamabad. She is now using all platforms after failing to gain any concessions for her father to get him released without returning looted money.

Recently, she took to Twitter and wrote: “Insha’Allah [Godwilling] I shall be leading protest rallies across Pakistan that will not only ask for justice for Nawaz Sharif but demand rule of law, freedom of expression, end to [the] manipulation of the entire system to punish public representatives, stealing people’s mandate, [the] imposition of SELECTED.”

She added: “Every Pakistani who wishes to live in a free, democratic and just Pakistan, must join.”

PML-N has accused the government of initiating a crackdown against the party workers. The party leadership has protested against the authorities for not allowing people to join a rally staged by Maryam.

PML-N information secretary Marriyum Aurangzeb said that Prime Minister Imran Khan was afraid of the rally being taken out to get the former PM released from jail. “Mr Khan is sitting in the US but he is afraid of Nawaz, Shahbaz and Maryam Nawaz,” she said.

PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal also highlighted the same points.

A few days ago, Maryam Nawaz along with other senior leaders of the party, held a press conference and showed a video of Judge Arshad Malik, the judge of accountability court who convicted Nawaz Sharif in the Avenfiled reference. The leaked video, claimed Maryam, confirmed that the judge was under pressure and was compelled to convict Nawaz contrary to the facts. According to Maryam, the video was secretly made by a PML-N activist Nasir Butt who happens to be Judge Arshad Malik’s friend.

Read more: “Shame on you”, Maryam replies on Imran Khan’s tweet

Later on, the judge not only termed the video fabricated and misleading but also submitted an affidavit before the Islamabad High Court (IHC) and clarified that he was not only offered bribes by the Sharif family but also threatened of dire consequences if he does not resign. Judge Arshad Malik explained his meetings with the Sharif family and their representatives and disclosed that he was under pressure to take money and not convict the PML-N supremo. However, the judge stood firm and decided the case on its merits.

Dr. Moeed Pirzada, prominent Pakistani political commentator, was the first person who highlighted and repeatedly maintained that Nasir Butt, who happened to be someone who was visiting the judge in probate capacity, should be probed for leaking a video containing personal discussion. He based his argument on the premise that many foreign diplomats and ministers often meet journalists and frequently share off-the-record information as well. No journalist is ever expected to leak the video of such discussion. He urged Pakistani media and public intellectuals to approach the matter from this standpoint which is vital to ensure privacy and grace expected in a democracy.

Read more: ‘Free Nawaz Sharif’: Maryam Nawaz’s black outfit speaks of her defiance

Will Maryam Nawaz be Arrested? 

Maryam Nawaz was released on bail after being convicted by an accountability court in Islamabad. She is now using all platforms after failing to seek any concession for her father to get him released without returning looted money. On this particular point, both PML-N and PPP are on the same page, they also enjoy support by the JUI-F. Analysts believe that Maryam’s struggle against the state institutions and particularly targeting the superior judiciary may lead her to some legal challenges.