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Tuesday April 23, 2024

Nawaz victim of political vengeance: accountability court

The detailed verdict says the proper legal procedure not followed to declare Nawaz PO

By News Desk & Numan Wahab
July 07, 2023
Pakistans former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif (centre) leaves from a property in west London on May 11, 2022. — AFP
Pakistan's former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif (centre) leaves from a property in west London on May 11, 2022. — AFP

LAHORE: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif was victimized politically through a reference at the behest of the former government and proper legal procedure was not followed to declare him a proclaimed offender. This was announced by an accountability court in its detailed judgment on the acquittal of PMLN Quaid in a 37-year-old private property case on Thursday.

The judgment said that perhaps the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) authorities were constrained to prepare the reference at the behest of the then ruling junta to damage and destroy the political career and goodwill of the accused, who had served Pakistan as an elected premier thrice. The court also ordered NAB and the revenue board to unfreeze the properties of Nawaz Sharif and 27 shareholders.

On June 24, the court acquitted Nawaz Sharif in this case and the detailed judgment was released on Thursday. The judgment said that proper legal procedure was not followed to declare the former prime minister a proclaimed offender. “If the mandatory conditions are not met, then the entire proceedings to declare an accused a proclaimed offender become illegal and void ab-initio,” the court added. “The record reflects that the accused Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif had become the victim of political victimisation, and perhaps the NAB authorities were constrained to prepare the reference at the behest of the-then ruling junta to damage and destroy the political career and goodwill of the accused, who had been three-time elected prime minister of Pakistan,” the judgment concluded.

Separately, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said it was imperative to “fix the actions” taken against the former premier and PMLN supremo Nawaz Sharif for improvement of the prevailing crises in the country. In a detailed statement on his official Twitter handle on Thursday, he said he knew from day one that deposed PM Nawaz was framed in the Panama Papers scandal “with an aim to oust him from politics and topple his government”.

The PM, who is also the president of the ruling PMLN, said this while referring to the recent revelations of PTI senior lawyer Hamid Khan wherein he claimed that the decision to disqualify Nawaz was already taken somewhere else while the Supreme Court’s decision in this regard was used to give it a legal cover. “The recent revelations by PTI’s senior lawyer and journalist about how Nawaz Sharif was deliberately framed in the Panama Papers with the aim of ousting him from government and banning him from politics is what we know from day one,” PM Shehbaz wrote in a tweet. However, the PM said revelations regarding Nawaz’s disqualification are “very important” even today as the “truth is coming out bit by bit”.

Shehbaz said the prevailing crises in which the country found itself trapped today started when a conspiracy was hatched to topple Nawaz’s government and bring PTI Chairman Imran Khan to power at any cost.

In this entire process, the premier said Pakistan suffered huge losses, democratic evolution was hindered and the economy was severely affected. “Fixing the actions taken against Nawaz Sharif is very important for the improvement of the situation. Alhamdulillah, I am proud of my leader who is on the right side of history and is being vindicated,” he added.