LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday directed the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government to inform Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Vice President Maryam Nawaz about its decision regarding the removal of her name from the Exit Control List (ECL).
A two-member bench of the high court, comprising Justice Ali Baqar Najafi and Justice Anwarul Haq Pannu, took up Maryam’s second petition seeking the removal of her name from the no-fly list and one-time permission to visit London to inquire after her ailing father, former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
The LHC on December 9, had disposed of her earlier petition and directed the government’s review committee to decide on the matter “within a week”.
The court asked how long it had been since its earlier order was issued, in response to which Maryam’s lawyer Amjad Pervez said that it had been two weeks since the directive was issued to the government and no decision had yet been taken on the matter.
Pervez added that Maryam’s representative Atta Tarar had also appeared before the government’s review committee but still no decision was taken.
The court asked Additional Attorney General Chaudhry Ishtiaq if the government had taken any decision on removing Maryam’s name from the ECL. To which, Khan said the review committee presents its recommendation to the cabinet, which then decides on the matter.
Justice Pannu noted that though the government has yet to decide on the matter, he had read in the newspaper today that the government would not allow her to go abroad.
“The government has to take a decision, and they should do so. How are they giving a statement before the decision is taken?” he asked.
On Sunday, Prime Minister Imran’s aide Dr Babar Awan had said that the subcommittee of the federal cabinet that deals with ECL cases had rejected her plea.
“The subcommittee is part of the cabinet and a formal announcement to bar Maryam from traveling abroad will be made by the federal cabinet in its meeting [on Tuesday],” Awan had said.
During the proceedings, the court said that Maryam should be informed of whatever decision is taken during Tuesday’s cabinet meeting.
Justice Pannu also asked Maryam’s counsel to explain the maintainability of the case.
“Is this petition for Maryam Nawaz or Nawaz Sharif?” he asked, in response to which Advocate Pervez said a summary of Nawaz’s case had been included in his daughter’s petition as their cases are connected.
The proceedings were adjourned until Thursday.