–PM says govt won’t move SC against verdict as it believes in respecting courts
–Law minister says Nawaz’s sentence is only suspended; Shehbaz would face contempt of court proceedings if Nawaz failed to come back
ISLAMABAD: The government has decided not to move the Supreme Court against a Lahore High Court (LHC) verdict that had allowed former prime minister Nawaz Sharif to leave Pakistan for medical treatment without any conditions.
According to reports, the prime minister said that the government was not in favour of challenging the high court’s verdict as his party, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), believed in respecting the decisions of courts.
The LHC on Saturday allowed the former premier to travel abroad for four weeks without having to sign the Rs7 billion indemnity bond suggested by the federal government, saying the duration could be extended on doctors’ recommendation.
Subsequently, the PM directed the legal team to review the court’s decision in this matter and present a report to him in the cabinet meeting.
‘SENTENCE ONLY SUSPENDED’:
Meanwhile, addressing the press conference following the cabinet meeting, Federal Minister for Law Barrister Farogh Naseem said that former prime minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif’s sentence has only been suspended.
Speaking to reporters along with Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan, Naseem said that asking for indemnity bonds from the former prime minister was cabinet’s decision.
However, Leader of Opposition and PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif accepted to give an undertaking to the court instead of submission of the indemnity bonds, he added.
Naseem claimed that the indemnity bond wasn’t a surety bond, adding that the PML-N president’s lawyers were asked to submit “indemnity bond or affidavit”. “Shehbaz Sharif could face contempt of court if PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif failed to return,” he added.
“Prime Minister Imran Khan had given me the task of Criminal Justice System and work is underway for its betterment,” he said, referring to judicial reforms.
Speaking on the occasion, Firdous Ashiq Awan said that Prime Minister Imran Khan, while chairing the cabinet meeting, expressed the determination to pass on the fruits of improving the economy to the people.
She said that the prime minister updated the cabinet on improving economic indicators of the country.
“For the first time, the current account deficit has decreased in the country due to measures taken by the economic team,” Firdous quoted the PM as saying.
“The prime minister directed all ministries and departments to accelerate efforts in implementation of people friendly policies of the government,” she said, adding the PM directed that each ministry should assess its performance on a monthly basis.