LAHORE: Maryam Nawaz and her other family members besides several PML-N leaders visited Kot Lakhpat Jail here on Thursday and met former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
Besides Maryam Nawaz, prominent among those who met the PML-N supremo included his mother, Hamza Shahbaz, Capt (r) Safdar, Junaid Safdar, PML-N Khyber Pakhtunkhwa President Engineer Amir Muqam, former KP governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra and Tahmina Daultana.
Dozens of charged party workers were also present near the jail to greet the PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz. While carrying placards and chanting slogans in support of her and Nawaz Sharif, they showered rose petals on the vehicle of the daughter of the former premier. Some party workers also brought a sacrificial goat which was later slaughtered outside the jail.
A woman party worker also brought a toy (replica) sewing machine, which was stitching Pakistani currency to mock the remarks about the sewing machine by Prime Minister Imran Khan’s sister Aleema Khan.
The party sources said the family had brought food and clothes for the former premier and they had lunch together
Meanwhile, Abdul Qadir Gilani and MPA Ali Hyder Gilani, the sons of former Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani called on former PM Mian Nawaz Sharif at Kot Lakhpat Jail on Thursday.
The PPP delegation inquired about the health of the former PM and expressed warm wishes for him. They also conveyed the message of Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani to the PML-N Quaid.
The PML-N Quaid is serving a seven-year term at the Kot Lakhpat Jail in the Al-Azizia Steel Mills reference. Besides imprisonment, the accountability court in its Dec. 24 verdict had also imposed fine of Rs1.5 billion and $25 million on the former PM.
.Meanwhile, a special medical board has been constituted for complete medical checkup of Nawaz Sharif. The board headed by Dr Shahid Hameed, Professor of Cardiology, Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC), examined the former PM in the jail on Wednesday and suggested three medical tests including echocardiography the results of which were awaited till filing of this report. The other members of the board are Dr Sajjad Ahmed and Dr Hamid Khalil, both from the PIC.
Sources said Nawaz Sharif, 69, informed the medical board that he had been suffering from diabetes mellitus and hypertension for the last 10 years while he was also a known case of ischemic heart disease since 2001.
It is pertinent to mention here that recently the former PM Nawaz Sharif had complained of pain in his arm which his daughter had feared might be angina, a symptom of an underlying heart problem. He was not granted immediate access to his personal cardiologist in the jail.
Talking to reporters outside the Kot Lakhpat Jail, former KP Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra said that the absence of real democracy in the country prompted the need of an alliance among the opposition parties.
The PML-N senior leader said the opposition alliance wanted to ensure real democracy in the country and not to topple the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government. He added the opposition had already provided a fair chance to the government to ensure real democracy and to do well for the country.
Iqbal Zafar Jhagra said Nawaz Sharif also wanted to let the PTI rule as they had formed the government. He added, however, now people had started expressing concerns over the government’s performance. It was in this backdrop that the main parties including PML-N and PPP realised that in order to ensure real democracy an alliance was necessary.
To a question about Shahbaz Sharif’s remarks about former President Asif Zardari in the past, Jhagra said there were no friends and foes in politics. He said the recent alliance was to ensure real democracy in the country and added people knew better who were raising voice for real democracy. He said people also had a fair realisation of the fact who had delivered in the past and who had the ability to deliver now.
PML-N KP President Amir Muqam talking to media outside criticised the PTI government and said he could see general elections taking place in 2020. “We don’t want them (the PTI government) to fall but they were about to fall and we are unable to extend any help”, he added.