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PR Short Notes


Photo Source: Dawn

Pakistan Reader# 684, 20 October 2023

All set for Nawaz Sharif’s homecoming



The PML-N is in control of the past, present, and future, says party's Senior Vice President Maryam Nawaz Sharif

Shamini Velayutham

On 19 October, Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was granted protective bail by the Islamabad High Court in the Avenfield and Al-Azizia cases until 24 October after the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) did not object to the petitions that were filed by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supreme leader before his scheduled return from self-imposed exile on 21 October. As part of its investigation into the Toshakhana case, an accountability court in Islamabad revoked the perpetual arrest warrants issued against the former prime minister in the graft cases involving a vehicle.

On 18 October, the petitions from the Nawaz were heard by a two-person Islamabad High Court (IHC) bench made up of Chief Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb. Special prosecutors Muhammad Rafay Maqsood and Muhammad Afzal Qureshi appeared before the court together with Deputy Prosecutor General Naeem Tariq Sanghera. After that, the IHC made the decision public and prohibited the authorities from detaining Nawaz upon his return.

Where is the PML-N supremo now?
On 18 October, PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif arrived in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) before his anticipated return to Pakistan. On 21 October, he will return to Pakistan after living in self-exile in London for four years. Despite having been given a prison term, he was permitted to fly. He was held up in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, for a crucial meeting, according to sources who spoke to Geo News, which caused him to arrive after a little delay. At the airport in Dubai, he was given "special protocol." Nawaz will spend his two days in Dubai with a small group of people before departing for Pakistan, travelling first to Islamabad and then to Lahore.

PML-N’s responses
The PML-N is in control of the past, present, and future, according to the party's Senior Vice President Maryam Nawaz Sharif, who spoke during a ceremony. The new party song, which details the party's historical upheavals, was formally introduced during the occasion by PMLN President Shehbaz Sharif. The people who had aimed to destroy Nawaz, according to Maryam Nawaz, are no longer involved. She thanked the Former Minister of Information Marriyum Aurangzeb, for his assistance in launching the anthem.

Meanwhile, Shehbaz Sharif expressed his heartfelt congratulations on the anthem's debut to Maryam, Marriyum Aurangzeb, and their entire team. He stated that the party's youth wing would give Nawaz Sharif a historic welcome on October 21. “We have to honour Nawaz Sharif by, according to him, the biggest welcome in the country’s history. I also thank the party leaders for their efforts to stage a historic welcome for Nawaz Sharif,” he insisted. Shehbaz added that Nawaz's homecoming was not an act of retribution but rather an effort to hasten the country's development and help it navigate its current challenges.

PPP and PTI contentions
The PPP and the PTI both argued that the IHC's decision to grant bail to the former prime minister was unlawful, and this did not sit well with the court. The ruling was described as a "murder of justice and law" in a statement made by the PTI spokesperson, who called it the "darkest day" in the nation's legal history. The PTI spokesperson recalled that although the country had waged a long and difficult battle for judicial independence, the court itself had damaged the rule of law and the administration of justice via its own "flawed and compromised" rulings. The spokesperson claimed that a section of the judiciary was acting as "an open facilitator in the ongoing political engineering". Separately, the PPP's leadership in Punjab said that "favours and concessions were being showered on a particular party as the caretaker government and some institutions were openly facilitating" the PML-N. They said that the protected bail granted to Mr Sharif was a first in legal history.
 
References
Malik Asad, “With arrest put on hold, Nawaz to land freely on 21st,” Dawn, 20 October 2023
Ali Raza, Awais Yousafzai, Khalid Iqbal and Murtaza Ali Shah, “Stage set for Nawaz’s hassle-free homecoming,” The News International, 20 October 2023
Murtaza Ali Shah, “En route to Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif reaches Dubai,” The News International, 19 October 2023

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