Nawaz Sharif’s bail extended

Patrick D Costa

Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif

Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who was convicted in a corruption case, took anticipatory bail to avoid arrest on his return home. This time his bail period has been extended.

On Tuesday (October 24), the Islamabad High Court extended Nawaz Sharif’s bail till October 26, his lawyer said.

Pakistan’s three-time prime minister Nawaz returned home last Saturday after leaving four years of voluntary exile in London with the desire to participate in the upcoming elections. He was ousted as prime minister in 2017 and sentenced to 14 years in two corruption cases the following year. That sentence was later reduced to seven years.

After several months of imprisonment, he fell ill and left for London, UK in November 2019 on bail for medical reasons. Since then Nawaz was living there.

Nawaz’s lawyer Azam Nazir Tarar said, “Until he (Nawaz) can appear for the hearing, the country’s anti-corruption agency has no objection to extending the bail period.” Based on which the court has extended his protective bail.”

Nawaz’s bail has been extended till Thursday. Then he will appear in court. Nawaz’s lawyer said that the court also accepted the appeal against his sentence.

According to the Constitution of Pakistan, a person convicted by a court cannot hold any public office in the country. In that case, Nawaz’s appeal to cancel the sentence paved the way for his participation in Pakistan’s general elections to be held in January next year.

Nawaz came to the country with the dream of becoming the Prime Minister of Pakistan for the fourth time. This has been clearly stated by his party Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). When Imran Khan was forced to leave power after losing a no-confidence vote in Parliament last year, the then opposition formed a coalition government led by the PML-N. Nawaz’s brother Shahbaz Sharif became the prime minister.

Shahbaz government could not take any measures to deal with the economic crisis of the country. Because of which they have to be highly criticized. Nawaz returned to the country with a promise to work on the reconstruction of the economy.

His main rival in this election is Imran Khan. However, he was also convicted in a corruption case and is currently in jail. Imran also appealed against his sentence to contest the elections.

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