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Panama Papers Scandal: NAB Presents Two Witnesses Against Nawaz Sharifs

15 November 2017

The accountability court approved on Wednesday deposed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and daughter Maryam Nawaz's application to be exempted from court in future hearing.

Sharif along with his daughter Maryam Nawaz and her husband Muhammad Safdar left the court hours before the judge announced the verdict.

Nawaz Sharif stated that he has to look after his ailing wife Kulsoom Nawaz in London; therefore, he should be granted the leniency for one week.

Maryam also submitted an exemption request saying that she will appear before the court whenever she is summoned.

On November 8, the accountability court had rejected the application filed by Sharif for clubbing together the references against him and his family, which meant that the Sharif family will stand three separate trials.

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Judge Mohammad Bashir had summoned two NAB witnesses today: Sidra Mansoor of Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan and Jahangir Ahmed of Inland Revenue Department.

Ahmad has been called to appear in court again on November 22 for cross-questioning in the next hearing.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has nominated Sharif and his sons - Hasan and Hussain Nawaz - in three references regarding Avenfield apartments, Al-Azizia Steel Mills and Flagship Investment filed in the backdrop of the Panamagate verdict.

Mansoor recorded her statement in the Avenfield flats reference, telling the court that she had appeared before the Investigation Officer in Lahore on August 18, and provided NAB documents containing the Sharif family's financial records.

Earlier, the court had issued perpetual warrants for Hussain and Hassan Nawaz's arrest and separated their trial from other members of the family.

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The Supreme Court also assigned Justice Ijazul Ahsan a supervisory role to monitor the progress of the accountability court proceedings.

Also on Tuesday, the bench had rejected a miscellaneous application of the former prime minister seeking to restrain the trial court from proceeding in the NAB references until his application is decided.

Responding to a journalist's question inside the court about Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan's bail approval by the anti-terrorism court (ATC) yesterday, Nawaz said, "the courts have double standards".

The references against the Sharif family pertain to the Azizia Steel Mills and Hill Metals Establishment, their London properties and over dozen offshore companies owned by the family.

Nawaz, along with Maryam and Safdar had earlier reached Islamabad from Lahore.

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Safdar was also directed to take the court's permission before leaving the country from now on.

Panama Papers Scandal: NAB Presents Two Witnesses Against Nawaz Sharifs