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July 10,2018

NAB Lahore seeks chopper to shift Nawaz to Pindi

Arshad Dogar & Asim Yasin & Numan Wahab

LAHORE/ISLAMABAD: The NAB Lahore on Monday requested Bureau’s Chairman Justice (retd) Javed Iqbal to provide a helicopter for shifting former premier Nawaz Sharif and her daughter Maryam Nawaz upon their arrival in Lahore directly the airport to the Adiala Jail, Rawalpindi.

Sources in the Bureau confirmed that NAB Lahore DG Saleem Shahzad had written a letter to Javed. They added that the request was made in a bid to avoid any unpleasant situation at the time of arrival of the duo.

Earlier, the Bureau decided to arrest Nawaz and Maryam upon their return at the airport for which, it is learnt, two teams have been constituted to be deployed at the airports in Lahore and Islamabad.

According to the sources, Javed will make the decision today (Tuesday) and if he permitted, then an official request would be sent to the Cabinet Division for this purpose. They said after the approval of request, both of them would be shifted from the Lahore airport to the Adiala jail.

They were of the view that the arrest of Nawaz and Maryam outside the airport could create complications similar to that faced by the NAB in the arrest of Capt Safdar. However, they confirmed that the request yet had not been approved by the chairman.

According to the sources, the final decision would have to be taken by the Caretaker Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk, if the Ministry of Interior and the Cabinet Division agreed to the request. However, the option of granting permission of hiring a helicopter would also be taken up in a high-level meeting, which is expected to be held today (Tuesday), which was summoned by the interior ministry in a bid to formulate a strategy to maintain the law and order situation .

The sources say the meeting will discuss security strategy and arrangements to maintain the law and order on the arrival Nawaz and Maryam in Lahore and avert the situation created on Sunday in Rawalpindi during the arrest Capt Safdar. The meeting would be attended by the senior officials of NAB and FIA, Punjab IGP and others.

The meeting will discuss a strategy for ensuring law and order situation in Lahore on the arrival of Nawaz and Maryam who announced to land in Lahore and the PML-N had already made a call to receive them at the Allama Iqbal International Airport.

Earlier on July 5, an accountability court judge Bashir Ahmad awarded jail sentences to Nawaz, Maryam and Safdar in the Avenfield reference. Meanwhile, the Lahore police have devised a comprehensive security plan in connection with the PML-N supremo’s arrival on Friday.

At least 25 police officials will be deputed on the route which has been divided into two parts – first to security at and around the airport and the second from the Cantt area to Jati Umra. Police have declared 24 points in the city as sensitive and are working on the expected untoward situation. Anti-riot force, patrolling police and Elite Force will ensure foolproof security. Police officials have also decided to allow the activists to reach outside the airport, but no one would be allowed to violate the law. The sources say police is also preparing a list of the miscreants who could create nuisance.


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