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Pakistan court gives Nawaz Sharif conditional relief

Nawaz Sharif  

An accountability court on Tuesday granted conditional exemption from appearing for hearings to former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif but issued bailable warrants for his children in corruption cases registered against the family on their assets stashed abroad through offshore accounts not declared before the tax authorities.

The accountability court judge announced that the former Prime Minister would be indicted on October 2. Mr. Sharif appeared in court briefly and said he had to frequently travel to London, where his wife Kulsoom Nawaz has been operated upon for cancer.

His children Hassan, Hussain and Maryam are in London with their mother. Later, Mr. Sharif held a press conference in which he decried his conviction by the Supreme Court in July and said no corruption was found by the apex court. Yet he was disqualified.

He said the court decision will not be accepted by the people of Pakistan. “The judges could not find any corruption so they ordered a Joint Investigation Team to probe the allegations. After failing to find any truth in the allegations the court asked the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to open cases against me and the court also took control of NAB,” he said.

Also read: The Panama Papers in Pakistan: a timeline

Earlier, the accountability court in Islamabad began hearing several corruption cases against the former Prime Minister following a Supreme Court ruling in July. Five judges disqualified Mr. Sharif for his links with a previously undeclared company in Dubai. Mr. Sharif had contested that the FZE Capital firm in Dubai belonged to his son and he was chairman, board of directors and never received any salary. But the apex court declared he was not honest as he hid this company from the tax authorities.

The Supreme Court also ordered the NAB, the country’s top anti-corruption body to register graft cases against the Sharif family for failing to submit a paper trail to their assets stashed abroad through offshore companies.

During Tuesday’s hearing a prosecutor from NAB opposed complete exemption to the former Prime Minister. Mr. Sharif’s lawyer Khawaja Haris, earlier urged the court to grant exemption to him as he submitted himself before the court. The judge after hearing the arguments ruled that Mr. Sharif will be granted exemption on hearing to hearing basis.

after he failed to disapprove of a previously undeclared company in Dubai. Mr. Sharif had contested that FZE Capital firm in Dubai belonged to his son and he was chairman board of directors and never received any salary. But the apex court declared him not being truthful and honest for hiding this company from tax authorities.

The Supreme Court also ordered the National Accountability Bureau, the country’s top anti-corruption body to register corruption cases against the Sharif family for failing to submit a paper trail to their assets stashed abroad through off shore companies.

During Tuesday’s hearing a prosecutor from NAB opposed complete exemption to the former Prime Minister. Mr. Sharif’s lawyer Khawaja Haris, earlier urged the court to grant exemption to him as he submitted himself before the court. The judge after hearing the arguments ruled that Mr. Sharif will be granted exemption on hearing to hearing basis.


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Printable version | Dec 6, 2021 12:36:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/pak-court-grants-exemption-to-nawaz-sharif/article19756060.ece

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