Both the houses of Parliament held their sittings Monday. No substantive issue was discussed in either of the house, in a manner that deserved in-depth reporting.

The Senate was to focus on the doings of National Accountability Bureau (NAB), an explosive topic by all means. But even on this issue, most opposition senators delivered also-ran type speeches or wasted time in trivial point scoring.

Winding up the discussion on NAB’s doings, Senator Azam Swati, the minister of parliamentary affairs, delivered some remarks, however, that made me wake up with a yawn.

At the outset of his winding up speech, he preferred to assert, too bluntly, that “Saqib Nisar,” the previous Chief Justice of Pakistan, didn’t act fair when it came to judge Jehangir Khan Tareen, during the hyperactive days of our judiciary that went on from 2016 to fairly late in 2018.

Former Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, had to leave his office “for not being able to prove” his credentials of a “Sadiq and Amin”. His sons were also accused of buying pricy flats in London with millions, which allegedly “laundered” the ill-gotten wealth of the Sharif family.

Jehangir Khan Tareen, a high profile PTI leader, also had to answer questions related to properties that his family had bought in England.

Swati insisted with vigor that Jehangir Khan Tareen, aka JKT, was able to furnish “fault free” documents to prove that his money was clean. “Yet, Saqib Nisar,” disqualified him for holding a public office.

The minister of parliamentary affairs didn’t sound subtle while promoting the feeling that “Saqib Nisar” had punished JKT, only to look judicious. After the disqualification of Nawaz Sharif, “Saqib Nisar,”perhaps,wanted to get a high profile PTI leader as well to look just and prudent to the world.

I feel compelled to put “Saqib Nisar” in quotes; for, the minister of parliamentary affairs clearly went on spreading the feeling as if the former Chief Justice was single handedly responsible for what had happened to JKT and “the Court” was not responsible for it.

The minister also claimed that “Saqib Nisar” turned hyperactive during the culminating days of his tenure, also to prove “himself a greater leader than Imran Khan.”

I genuinely failed to get this. After all, “Saqib Nisar” had not been a politician and since retirement he had turned into an absolute recluse. He is seldom seen in public since retiring from the office.

Lest you forget, “Saqib Nisar” had also forced Azam Swati to furnish answers to some uncomfortable questions during his tenure. The minister was left with no choice but to sheepishly wait for the

retirement of “Saqib Nisar.” And only after his vacating the office, Swati had bounced back on the political scene with a bang.

The minister simply sounded to be settling personal scores with “Saqib Nisar.”But doing this, he conveniently forgot that he and his party, the PTI, kept on adoring “Saqib Nisar” like a hero throughout his hyperactive days. Values do change with times, one must add.

Only a handful of journalists stayed put in the press gallery during the national assembly proceedings. Most of them were desperately seeking the latest on Nawaz Sharif. Until my writing this column, none of us was certain whether the former Prime Minister would be leaving for treatment abroad, “by Wednesday.”

Nawaz Sharif had been spending time in Kot Lakhpat Jail of Lahore, due to the sentence that an accountability judge announced against him. More than two months ago, however, NAB took him into its custody with the intent of initiating a fresh case of alleged money laundering against him. His health deteriorated, alarmingly, during the NAB custody and he had to be shifted to a hospital for SOS treatment.

The doctors, attending him, failed to diagnose the real cause of his fast deteriorating health. To facilitate adequate diagnosis and treatment, Islamabad High Court released him on bail, but for three months only.

Nawaz Sharif’s family is convinced that he could only be furnished with adequate treatment if allowed to go abroad. Initially, the PTI government appeared too willing to permit the desired travel. Things turned complicated, however, primarily due to insidious whispers that viciously divided partisans spread about Nawaz Sharif’s health.

The PML-N loyalists preferred to imagine as if Nawaz Sharif was “deliberately ill-treated” in NAB’s custody. The government turned “panicky,” however, when his deteriorating health hit the alarm button. As if to “compensate” for the “callous conduct,” both the government and NAB did not resist his temporary release on bail and anxiously desired that he should go abroad to get himself treated.

The PTI promoters in regular and social media, on the other hand, opted to vend a counter-story, almost deliriously. The story claimed that Nawaz Sharif had “managed relief” for him via “plea bargain.” It was also claimed that in return to “the relief,” furnished for him, the former prime minister also promised to pay a huge amount to the state of Pakistan. Some had even stretched the imagined amount to “14 billion US dollars.”

The corruption-hating base of the PTI felt extremely disappointed with stories, promoting the suspicions of “a deal.” The hard-core loyalists of Imran Khan didn’t expect “this” from their leader. They want him to say firmly unforgiving to “looters and plunderers.”

For sure, Prime Minister Imran Khan does not want his admirers to feel disappointed. His government is thus trying hard to show it to you and I that institutions like the courts and NAB furnished “some relief” to the sentenced prime minister, solely on health grounds.

Yet, the government doesn’t know how to articulate and manage sending the message of its preference. Nawaz Sharif’s fate, so far, thus seems stuck in the limbo.

The “well-informed” types of Islamabad, however, keep claiming that “by Tuesday afternoon,” the government might be able to manage building a scenario, showing to us that “critical state” of Nawaz Sharif’s health eventually convinced not only the government, but also all the “concerned” institutions like the courts and NAB, to let him go abroad for adequate treatment. There certainly is no “deal” or “NRO” for Nawaz Sharif.