Science and Technology Minister Fawad Hussain Choudhary on Saturday asked Imran Khan-led government to challenge Lahore High Court's (LHC) direction in the Supreme Court to stop the former prime minister from going to London for medical treatment. Nawaz is required to travel to London for the treatment of his immune system disorder. His health deteriorated last month while he was serving a seven-year prison term in the Kot Lakhpat jail. Fawad questioned the possibility of Nawaz Sharif returning to Pakistan after treatment.
In a video message that has surfaced on social media, Fawad said, "I have practiced law for 16-17 years and I don't see any ground on the basis of which the jailed convict should be allowed to move out of the country." "If we talk about the possibility of him coming back... Nawaz Sharif and his son hold properties abroad. How will you ask him to return to the country? I don't want to comment on the court's order but we should challenge this direction in the Supreme Court."
Earlier on Saturday, the LHC turned down the government order and allowed the former premier to travel abroad for medical treatment without any condition. The government had asked Nawaz to submit an indemnity bond "to the tune of Paksitani rupee 7-7.5 billion." The two-judge bench comprising Justice Ali Baqar Najafi and Justice Sardar Ahmad Naeem heard the plea filed by PML-N president and Nawaz's brother Shehbaz Sharif against the conditions imposed by the government on Nawaz's travel.
According to the order, Shehbaz Sharif can accompany his brother abroad for four weeks. Nawaz was rushed to the hospital from Kot Lakhpat jail last month after his personal physician Dr. Adnan raised an alarm over his deteriorating health. Doctors are struggling to bring his platelet count — that had dropped to dangerous levels — back to normal. Sharif was expected to leave Pakistan on Sunday. However, his ticket was canceled as the authorities did not remove his name from the ECL list.
On November 12, the Pakistan Cabinet decided to allow the ailing former PM to go to the UK for medical treatment but only if he sign surety bonds worth Rs 7 billion, making a commitment that he would return after the treatment and face corruption cases against him. However, on Wednesday Sharif refused to meet Imran Khan's government's demand to submit indemnity bonds for travel to the United Kingdom. Khan stated that the Sharif family was "playing politics" on the 69-year-old politician's health, adding he had no issues if the Sharif family opted to approach the court instead of furnishing an indemnity bond.
(with ANI inputs)