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April 26, 2019

Nawaz files plea for permanent bail

Top Story

April 26, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday requested the Supreme Court (SC) for proceeding abroad to get medical treatment from the same set of medical practitioners who had earlier treated him.

The former prime minister filed a review petition through his counsel Khwaja Haris under the Article 188 of the Constitution against the court order passed on March 26 granting bail for six weeks on medical grounds, restricting him from going abroad but to consult his own choice of doctors withinthe country. A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa and comprising Justice Sajjad Ali Shah and Justice Yahya Afridi on March 26, 2019 resumed hearing into the petition of Nawaz Sharif against the verdict of Islamabad High Court (IHC) dismissing his bail application in Al-Azizia corruption reference.

The court had suspended the prison sentence of former premier for six months, directing him to deposit surety bonds of Rs10 million with its Registrar Office.

An IHC bench comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani on February 25 dismissed Nawaz’ petition seeking bail and suspension of his seven-year sentence on medical grounds.

Nawaz was sentenced to seven years in prison and fined Rs1.5 billion and $25 million in the Al-Azizia corruption reference, in a verdict by an accountability court on December 24, 2018.

Nawaz Sharif however, on March 1, 2019, filed a petition in the Supreme Court praying setting aside the judgment of Islamabad High Court (IHC) rejecting his bail plea in Al-Azizia corruption reference.

On Thursday, Nawaz Sharif prayed to the apex court to modify its order passed on March 26 and allow him to go abroad for consulting medical practitioners who had earlier treated him.

He informed the apex court that given the complicated and life threatening nature of the ischemic heart disease, carotid artery disease, lymphadenopathy and renal artery stenosis coupled with co-morbid diseases including blood pressure, Type II diabetes mellitus and third-stage chronic kidney disease, the medical professionals in Pakistan recommended that the only feasible option available to him is to be treated by the same set of medical practitioners who had been treating him earlier in the United Kingdom.

Nawaz Sharif contended that it is in the interest of justice that the order passed by the apex court on March 26, granting him bail for six weeks but restricted him from moving abroad and getting treatment in Pakistan only be modified.

He submitted that diagnosis made and the examination conducted and treatment so far administered as well as treatment recommended by the doctors unequivocally showed that his treatment as well as full recovery is not possible within the period of six weeks for which bail has been granted to him and his release on bail without specification of any such condition and the order dated March 26, 2019 merits to be reviewed accordingly.

The former prime minister also pointed out that the written order passed by the apex court on March 26, 2019 omitted verbal directives by the bench allowing him Nawaz to apply for bail extension by approaching the Islamabad High Court. “It is submitted that this may be due to a typographical error but nevertheless remains an error apparent on the face of the record.

He prayed to the apex court to allow the instant review petition and to modify the order dated March 26, 2019 in the interest of justice.

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