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Thursday, February 15, 2024

Will Shehbaz Sharif be granted two-week parole to attend mother’s funeral?

The petition seeks immediate release of Shehbaz Sharif to attend funeral prayers of Begum Shamim Akhtar and to receive the people that will come from every part of the country to condole with family.

The Leader of Opposition in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif and his son Hamza Shehbaz have submitted applications for their release on parole to the deputy commissioner. Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leader Ataullah Tarrar has submitted the plea for release of Shehbaz Sharif and Hamza Shehbaz on parole to attend funeral prayers of Begum Shamim Akhtar, mother of Nawaz Sharif and Shehbaz Sharif.

The petition seeks immediate release of Shehbaz Sharif and Hamza Shehbaz from jail to attend the funeral prayers of Begum Shamim Akhtar and to receive the people that will come from every part of the country to condole with them.

The petition seeks the release of two PML-N leaders from jail on parole for two weeks.

The funeral prayers of the mother of PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif and Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif would be offered in London before bringing the body back to Pakistan,

According to sources within PML-N, the funeral prayers of Shamim Akhtar would be offered at Central Mosque Regent Park Street in London.

The body would then be shifted to a morgue, they said adding that it would be brought back to Pakistan via a flight to Lahore.

Read more: All cases against PML-N are false, if corruption is found I should be hanged: Shehbaz Sharif

On September 28, the Lahore High Court (LHC) rejected the bail application of Shehbaz Sharif. He was subsequently arrested by the NAB officials from the LHC.

What is parole?

Parole is a temporary release of a prisoner who agrees to certain conditions before the completion of the maximum sentence period. The prisoner (called a “parolee”) gets out from behind bars but has to live up to a series of responsibilities. Under parole as most people think of it—sometimes called “discretionary” parole—an inmate gets out of prison early and serves some part of the remaining sentence under parole supervision.

Under the traditional parole system, parole is a privilege for prisoners who seem capable of reintegrating into society. Authorities retain the discretion to deny parole to prisoners they deem dangerous. According to the Law, the parole can be granted to any prisoner. The Punjab Prison rules 1978 in this regard says;

According to Punjab Prison Rules 1978. Rule 545-B said that the duration of permission to attend a Funeral “may” not “ordinarily” exceed 12 hours, “Depending on the circumstances of Each Case”.

Nawaz Sharif was also released on parole to attend the funeral of Begun Kulsoom Nawaz, wife of Nawaz Sharif, who died in London on Tuesday.

Former PM Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani had also been granted parole for three days when his mother died he was released from Adiala Jail for three days on parole.

Former President Asif Ali Zardari was arrested in November 1996 after PPP Govt was toppled by the then President Farooq Laghari. After 6 years in November 2002, he was released on Parole to visit his mother Bilqees Begum on death-bed & perform her funeral rituals.

Legal experts believe that Shehbaz Sharif will also get released on parole to attend her mother’s funeral.

Sharif family’s money laundering

According to the NAB investigation report, the Chief Financial Officer of the Sharif family Muhammad Usman laundered money for the Shehbaz family.

Muhammad Usman started working for the Sharif family in 2005 at Ramzan Sugar Mills for Rs 90,000 per month. In 2006, the Nawaz family acquired Hudaibiya Engineering from the Shehbaz family and in 2007, the Shehbaz family made more companies, including the Sharif Feed Mill, to expand their business.

The bank accounts of Shehbaz Sharif’s wife Nusrat Shehbaz and his sons were used for foreign remittances and loans. On the direction of Salman, Waqar Trading Company made fake foreign remittances of Rs 600 million.

The entire amount was transferred to Salman Shehbaz’s personal account via cheque but it is not known where Salman received his money from.

Did Shehbaz Sharif steal money?

According to a confidential investigation report seen by the Daily Mail, millions of pounds were transferred into the bank accounts of Shehbaz’s family members, including his wife, children, and a son-in-law. It states to have interviewed key witnesses held on remand in jail, including a UK citizen, Aftab Mehmood, who claims that he had laundered millions on behalf of Shahbaz’s family from a nondescript office in Birmingham – without attracting suspicion from Britain’s financial regulators, who inspected his books regularly.

According to Daily Mail, investigators are convinced that some of the allegedly stolen money came from the Department for International Development (DFID)-funded aid projects. For rehabilitating and rebuilding lives of the poor, the DFID gave £54 million from UK taxpayers; and the legal documents allege that Shehbaz’s son-in-law received about £1 million from that fund.

As per claims by the Daily Mail, Britain’s National Crime Agency has been working closely with Pakistani investigators and Home Secretary Sajid Javid discussing the possible extradition of members of Shehbaz’s family, who have taken refuge in London.

Read more: Maryam Nawaz get hits by her own security guard outside IHC

A confidential investigation report, seen by Daily Mail, says the family was worth just £150,000 in 2003 but by 2018 their total assets had grown to around £200 million. Among other properties, Shehbaz owns a 53,000 sq ft palace in Lahore, which has its own large security force. The money, the report says, was channeled from abroad – via several elaborate money-laundering schemes, in which Britain played a central role.