PML-N legal team to approach LHC for Nawaz Sharif's bail before return

Decision taken to avoid Nawaz Sharif’s arrest at Lahore airport

Sunday, October 01, 2023
PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif outside his London home in this undated picture. — AFP/File

LAHORE: As Nawaz Sharif’s return date moves closer, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) through its legal team has decided to approach the Lahore High Court (LHC) for his bail before he lands in Pakistan, reported The News.

The decision was taken to avoid Nawaz Sharif’s arrest at Lahore airport because he was declared a proclaimed offender.

It is unclear when the party would exactly approach the courts for bail.

PML-N officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, shared that the party’s legal team would approach LHC for bail a week before the three-time prime minister’s return to the country. They shared that the decision to approach the court was discussed with Nawaz, Shehbaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz in recent meetings held in London.

Meanwhile, the sources also said that a protective bail application may also be submitted in the court just two days before Nawaz’s return in which it would be prayed that the PML-N supremo should not be arrested for seven days and he would surrender himself before the relevant court.

The party sources shared that the PML-N legal team may take a stance in the plea that Maryam had already been acquitted in the case in which Nawaz was convicted. With the acquittal of Maryam and Captain (retd) Muhammad Safdar, Nawaz is likely to get full legal benefits from the court.

The publication reported that the team would also give guarantees to the court that Nawaz would surrender himself before the relevant trial court.

Party sources said if the bail is approved then Nawaz would not go to jail immediately on his return home and he would also be able to address the public gathering planned at Minar-e-Pakistan grounds.

The PML-N supremo reached London on November 19, 2019, when he fell critically ill in prison.

It was alleged by the Sharif family that the Imran Khan-led government and his backers had tried to poison Nawaz. He was treated at the Harley Street Clinic and London Bridge Hospital for four months.

The three-time prime minister had been diagnosed with an immune system disorder and doctors in Pakistan recommended that he should go abroad for treatment as his condition continued to deteriorate despite the best possible care in the country.

However, in August of this year, PML-N President Shehbaz announced that Nawaz would return to Pakistan on October 21 to lead the party’s election campaign.

The decision to return around mid-October was taken after Shehbaz held two meetings with the PML-N supremo in London. Shehbaz had reached London after handing over the reins to Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar.

The PML-N’s narrative on Nawaz’s return to Pakistan will be on the economy, governance, and public issues and not on anything that reeks of revenge or confrontation with any institution, especially the military establishment.

Senior PML-N leaders have said that the issues of Pakistan are so serious and challenging that confrontation with anyone is not the solution and the only way forward is to work through reconciliation and accommodation.