19 September 2020
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The Islamabad High Court issued on Tuesday the non-bailable arrest warrants for former PM Nawaz Sharif in the Al-Azizia corruption case and dismissed his review petition challenging his surrender.

The PML-N founder is currently in London where he is receiving medical treatment. He was allowed to travel abroad after the Islamabad High Court approved his plea and suspended his seven-year sentence in the Al Azizia case.

The court had earlier reserved its verdict in the case.

On September 1, the court had given time to Nawaz to surrender to the court while hearing the Sharif family’s appeals against their sentences in the Avenfield and Al-Azizia cases.

NAB argued that Nawaz is currently in London on expired bail. The government allowed him to travel abroad on November 13, 2019 if he agreed to submit Rs7 billion surety bonds. The Lahore High Court, however, had removed the indemnity bonds condition and allowed him to travel for four weeks.

Nawaz’s lawyer had challenged the court orders telling the PML-N founder to surrender. NAB, however, said that the review petition cannot be heard in court.

Toshakhana reference

On September 9, former president Asif Ali Zardari was indicted in the Toshakhana reference, while Nawaz was declared a proclaimed offender.

An Islamabad accountability court heard the Toshakhana reference. Former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani was also indicted.

NAB has accused former prime minister Gilani of illegally allotted cars to Nawaz and Zardari.

The accountability watchdog stated that Zardari and Nawaz obtained cars from the Toshakhana by paying only 15% of the price of the luxury vehicles.

It also alleged that Gillani had facilitated the allotment of the vehicles to Zardari and Nawaz by illegally relaxing the rules.

According to the reference, Zardari had received armoured vehicles as gift from the UAE and Libya between 2005 and 2008 but didn’t report the report the gifts or deposit them.

The Toshakhana is an official treasury where gifts from foreign dignitaries or heads of state are deposited. Two former prime ministers, Nawaz and Gilani, have also been nominated in the reference. Gilani, however, has been granted an exemption from appearing for the case hearings.

Abdul Gh Lone

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