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Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif is set to appear before JIT on June 15, 2017.

Extra security arrangements have been put in place in and around the Federal Judicial Academy where Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will be questioned by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) probing the premier’s family’s global money trail today.

The Supreme Court began investigating Sharif late last year after the main political parties failed to agree on a committee to probe the Panama Papers leaks, and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan threatened mass protests and to ‘shut down Islamabad’.

The JIT had prepared the questionnaire for the prime minister and his children last month. It has already questioned Hussain Nawaz, the PM’s elder son. The investigation team has also grilled his younger son, Hassan.

Read more: PML-N leaders U-turn on JIT; Question ISI, MI involvement

The PM’S elder son Hussain Nawaz moved the Supreme Court for changing the JIT’s formation while Sharif’s cousin Tariq Shafi moved the top Court against what he described as harassment by JIT.

In a press statement, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Dr. Asif Kirmani Tuesday said the said it came to the knowledge of the prime minister that the workers wanted to express their solidarity with him during his appearance.

The prime minister said the PML-N workers were the assets of the party and he was aware of their sentiments and wanted to thank them.

The prime minister’s notice came shortly after PTI chief Imran Khan tweeted on Tuesday that he ‘won’t allow’ PML-N’s ‘Gullus’ to hold a show of physical strength when Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif appears before the Joint Investigation Team probing his alleged offshore wealth.

The PM’S elder son Hussain Nawaz moved the Supreme Court for changing the JIT’s formation while Sharif’s cousin Tariq Shafi moved the top Court against what he described as harassment by JIT. Hussain again moved the Supreme Court against the leakage of his photograph during interrogation.

The appearance of Prime Minister of Pakistan before JIT today is not unprecedented. Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has a history of appearing before Courts and commissions. Starting from Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto all the way to Asif Ali Zardari, PPP has never shied away from facing courts. Recently, high-level party officials such as Dr. Asim Hussein and Sharjeel Inam Memon have also presented themselves before the Courts.

Read more: Will judicial activism enable JIT to get accountability?

On the other hand, the track record of PML-N is very different from PPP when it comes to facing the Courts. The infamous attack on Supreme Court building in Islamabad by PML-N workers and leadership in the November of 1997 still haunts the country. Nihal Hashmi’s recent statements threatening the JIT’s members and judges of honorable Supreme Court brought back the memories of the 1997 assault on Supreme Court of Pakistan.

The force behind the case, Imran Khan, has again called upon the Prime Minister to resign in order to allow for a fair accountability process.

According to a news published in Express Tribune on June 15, the ruling party has instructed its workers to reach the federal capital on Thursday in support of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who is making his maiden appearance before JIT.

The JIT was instituted following the decision of the Supreme Court on 20th April. The composition of the team and its role has come under heavy criticism from the ruling party ever since it called Hussain Nawaz for intense investigation. Representatives of Pakistan Muslim League (N) have berated the JIT for “insulting” the scions of the Sharif family. They are reiterating that the JIT is meting out a rough treatment and it lacks credibility and jurisdiction. Doubts were also raised on the inclusion of military officers from the ISI and MI.

It is befitting to argue that the campaign against the JIT is an attempt to discredit it and make it controversial. Further, the celebratory messages in wake of PM’s appearance in the JIT have shown that the applicability of law in the country is lopsided and favors the powerful.

Read more: Week 4 of the JIT; What do we know so far?

The force behind the case, Imran Khan, has again called upon the Prime Minister to resign in order to allow for a fair accountability process.

While PM’s cavalcade will reach the Judicial Academy today, the common citizenry will recall and relate how the powerless are investigated by LEAs and courts. If anything they will find a stark difference. The credibility of the accountability process will be once again questioned.

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