Shehbaz Sharif urges govt for providing 'jail perks' to Nawaz

Farooq Naeem—AFP

Farooq Naeem—AFP

Sources informed Geo News that the Islamabad High Court (IHC) had received a letter from the judge recusing himself from hearing Al-Azizia and Flagship references against Nawaz Sharif and his family.

According to Lahore Police, a total of 12 FIRs have been lodged against the suspects, including Shahbaz Sharif, former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and 50 other leaders of the party.

On the other hand, former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz were granted "B Class" facility in Adiala Jail.

In the appeal, it was also argued that no evidence was submitted in the Accountability Court that Nawaz Sharif had given money to his children for running a business.

The allegations against the PML-N leaders include damaging public properties, issuing threats and injuring law enforcement personnel.

The sentences, delivered in absentia, against Nawaz Sharif and his daughter who is widely seen as his political heir, have dealt a blow to their Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party.

Sharif and his political heir Maryam were arrested at the Lahore airport late on Friday as they returned to the country in an attempt to rally for their beleaguered party days before the July 25 polls.

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In a video message Friday reportedly from aboard his aircraft en route to Pakistan, Sharif said he was returning knowing he would be taken directly to prison.

Professor Tahir Malik, political analyst and academic, said that it was nearly impossible that Sharif and his daughter Maryam would be released on bail before the July 25 general elections. Sharif told Reuters at the airport in Abu Dhabi as he waited for a connecting flight to Lahore.

Last week, the party alleged that authorities had detained hundreds of party members ahead of Sharif's return.

The trial against the Sharif family had commenced on September 14, 2017. Maryam was convicted for concealing ownership of the apartments.

It's one of several court cases underway against Sharif, who was ousted from office by the Supreme Court last July for corruption.

Sharif, who has been banned from politics, is believed to have run afoul of the military, which has ruled Pakistan directly or indirectly for most of its 71-year history, when he sought to restrict its involvement in civilian affairs and criticized army efforts to combat extremist groups, despite Sharif's own past courting of religious groups in search of votes.

A appeal was also filed against conducting the proceedings of the remaining two corruption cases within the Adiala jail premises, it added.

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