KARACHI - PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz has said that the party chief Nawaz Sharif has been disqualified but not discredited, despite many attempts by their enemies.

In an interview with Geo TV on Wednesday, she said since the disqualification of Nawaz failed to achieve its purpose, the narrative surrounding plus and minus formulas have emerged. Maryam was also asked to comment on who she thinks is behind the so-called conspiracy against Nawaz, to which she responded: “I leave the thought with you and the people of Pakistan.”

Commenting on Nisar asking the party members to refrain from criticism, she said that she understands that Nisar made the remarks in sympathy with the party. However, she said that she doesn’t understand the dynamics of getting justice in the country. “If you criticise, then you won’t get justice, but if you don’t criticise then you will get justice?”

“What is the standard of justice,” she asked. “Our point of view is that there lies anger on the other side and the verdict [disqualification of Nawaz] was announced in haste.”

Maryam claimed that “Panama case was not about corruption, money laundering or misuse of power.” Just because the names appeared on the Panama case it didn’t mean that those people were “necessarily involved in corruption or any wrongdoing.”

If there is no wrongdoing, no misuse of authority then no one has the right to raise these issues, she said. However, this was used as a basis to bring humiliation to Sharif family. “We were asked private questions such as ‘why does daughter live with her father? Why did a father give gifts to his daughter? Why did a son give money to his father?”

“We were also openly labelled to be ‘don’, ‘Sicilian mafia’ and ‘godfather’. Everyone saw the murder of justice in the court,” she added.

Speaking about cases against her, she claimed that she was targetted because she stood in between the attacks launched against Nawaz Sharif. “I was also targetted in the Dawn Leaks. One of the central characters who involved me in Dawn Leaks has met his fate,” she remarked. Nawaz compromised on many things for the sake of country’s progress, she said, adding “he doesn’t want the system to be harmed.”

“Personally speaking, I think, Mian sahab should not have compromised,” she remarked. “He should have put his foot down.” However, Nawaz’s willingness to compromise was “seen as a weakness” and external forces tried to use this against him.

On the options available to Nawaz in the current political scenario, Maryam shared: “Mian sahab has all the options. He doesn’t even require National Reconciliation Ordinance.”

When asked if Nawaz has no fear of being jailed, she remarked: “We have been there and done that.” She shared that her family members have been imprisoned as well as exiled in the past.

She also said that Sharif family has time and again been blackmailed with National Accountability Bureau references, imprisonment, Dawn Leaks, among others.  Maryam was also asked to comment on why PML-N didn’t raise their voice when former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani was disqualified. To which Maryam said that Nawaz had indeed accepted that this should not have happened as it sets a bad precedent. “He remarked this before coming to power,” she explained.

“We agree that all institutions should be respected. But this significance of parliament cannot be discounted. Others are constitutional institutions but parliament is a law-making institution.”

Maryam also shared that PML-N has learnt from its mistakes and made many sacrifices to compensate for those mistakes. On Pakistan Peoples Party’s Co-Chairperson Asif Ali Zardari’s remarks against Nawaz, she said: “I am in a fix regarding his statements. Right now people are happy being used but they will soon realise it,” she claimed, adding that once Nawaz’s enemies are done with them they will target other people. She also shared that it’s not in her position to contact Zardari over the matter. “I can’t call him, it’s not my position to contact him.”

“We have leaders such as Shehbaz and Nawaz to take this decision. I am not making policies nor am I responsible for their enunciation.” On NA-120 by-election, in which PML-N was victorious, she explained that her cousin Hamaz Shehbaz could not campaign with her as he had to leave Pakistan due to some “personal reasons”. Maryam also cleared the air regarding the alleged rift in Sharif family and claimed that Shehbaz Sharif is the most intelligent member of the family and he has been her hero since childhood.

On the National Accountability Bureau references against the Sharif family, Maryam said that references have been framed against Nawaz. “There is no allegation of any corruption or kickback against him[Nawaz],” she shared.

“We are asked time and again where the money has come from? How did Hussain, Hassan [Nawaz’s sons] become billionaires at such a young age,” she claimed.

People don’t realise that Hassan and Hussain are grandsons of a billionaire, who was one of the richest people in Pakistan at one point.