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Federal agencies in contempt over Shehbaz Sharif: Pak SC Tuesday, 25 May 2021

Federal agencies in contempt over Shehbaz Sharif: Pak SC



Islamabad [Pakistan], May 25 (ANI): Pakistan Supreme Court on Tuesday noted that federal agencies had worked against the Lahore High Court (LHC) orders by preventing opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif to go abroad, which prima facie amounts to contempt of court.

Justice Sajjad Ali Shah wondered that since Shehbaz has withdrawn his petition from the high court, how can the government’s appeal be heard now, Geo News reported.

This comes after Attorney General of Pakistan Khalid Jawed Khan expressed concerns on the ‘swift action’ taken by the LHC on Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz seeking removal of his name from the Exit Control List ECL).

During today’s hearing, Jawed said the government is not concerned about an individual going abroad, but the manner in which the court fixed the plea, heard the appeal and issued the order for implementation is a "matter of concern".

"On Jummatul Wida, objections were raised on the petition and cleared on the same day and a single-member bench of the LHC announced the verdict ex parte," he complained.

The apex court adjourned the hearing till next Wednesday after issuing notices to the PML-N president and sought all records pertaining to the case from the LHC’s registrar, Geo News reported.

Earlier, Shehbaz had approached the LHC to withdraw his petitions against the government for placing him on a blacklist and seeking implementation of the court orders that gave him a one-time permission to go abroad for medical treatment, reported The News International.

A civil miscellaneous application, filed by Shehbaz’s counsel Senator Azam Nazir Tarar, said that Shehbaz intended to challenge the memorandum of putting him on the no-fly list by reserving his right to seek contempt proceedings against those not implementing the orders.

Shehbaz Sharif’s name had been placed on the ECL after approval from the federal cabinet, Pakistan’s Interior Ministry informed.

Shehbaz submitted a contempt petition in the LHC against six officials for barring him from flying abroad in violation of the court’s order granting him permission to fly.

On May 8, Shehbaz Sharif, the brother of three-time former premier Nawaz Sharif, was not allowed by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to leave the country for the United Kingdom via Doha. When he reached the Lahore airport, the immigration officials informed him that he could not board the flight as his name was on the ‘person not in list (PNIL)’.

Meanwhile, the interim order issued on May 7 by LHC granted Shehbaz conditional permission to go abroad for medical treatment "keeping in view the past conduct and travel history," and his name not being is not in ECL then.

The order also said that even if Sharif’s name was added in the blacklist it "will not stop the petitioner from one-time visit to the UK from May 8 to July 3 for his medical check-up as per his personal commitment made before this court." (ANI)

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