LAHORE - PML-N President and Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif yesterday held a meeting with former prime minister and his elder brother Nawaz Sharif at Jati Umra.

Maryam Nawaz Sharif, Hamza Shehbaz, Senator Pervez Rashid and Salman Shehbaz also joined the meeting which took up various issues with prime focus on the current political situation, health state of former first lady and MNA-elect Begum Kulsoom Nawaz Sharif in London and the expected visit of her spouse to see her.

Sources say the meeting also discussed the NAB cases against the Sharifs with respect to their stage of proceedings and appearance of the accused persons therein. In view of these cases, the participants shared input about the time which may be available to the former prime minister to see her ailing wife in London.

The sources say a suggestion for seeking time relief from the trial court in this regard also came under consideration.

Begum Kulsoom Nawaz Sharif who has been under treatment owing to her cancer problem in London since September last developed another tumour on her neck after she underwent chemotherapy for six times. Her doctors have advised another surgery which is expected in near future.

According to media reports, Begum Kulsoom, talking to Nawaz Sharif on phone, wanted her spouse and daughter Maryam Nawaz to visit her in London where her sons Hassan and Hussain Nawaz are attending their mother.

Nawaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz and her spouse Cap (r) Safdar are facing NAB references before the accountability court in Islamabad where the prosecution is about to close its evidence to let the defence present their witnesses. The references, being heard under the criminal procedure, necessitate the appearance of the accused persons during the trial proceedings. As such the court permission is necessary if they go abroad.

It is worth mentioning that the Sharifs are facing another problem created by the NAB on February 14 last for putting the names of Nawaz Sharif, Maryam and three other accused in the references on the Exit Control List (ECL). The bureau had written to the Interior Ministry, giving reasons for placing their names on the ECL. According to the letter, cases against them are at an advanced stage and their absence for any reason from the court may stall the proceedings and cause delay in the decision for which the Supreme Court has fixed a time limit. The Interior Ministry has referred the matter to the federal cabinet for taking a final decision on it.