ISLAMABAD - Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif Monday again approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC) seeking suspension of his sentence in Al-Azizia reference and release on bail on medical grounds.

A division bench of the IHC comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani will conduct hearing of the fresh petition moved by Sharif’s counsel Khawaja Haris Advocate seeking bail in the Al-Azizia case on medical grounds.

The former prime minister in his petition cited the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman, judge accountability court-II Islamabad and Kot Lakhpat Jail superintendent as respondents.

Sharif stated that the AC convicted him in reference No 19/2017 under section 10 of NAO, 1999 for a term of seven years along with fine of Rs1.5 billion. He added that against the aforesaid conviction and sentence, the petitioner had filed an appeal before this court and the same is now fixed for June 19 awaiting preparation of paper books of the trial proceedings.

“During the pendency of the afore-noted Criminal Appeal No 1/2019, the petitioner had initially applied for suspension of his sentence and bail by filing writ petition No 32/2019 on 15th January. However, later, on 26th January, he filed another writ petition No 352-B/2019 for suspension of his sentence and his release on bail on medical grounds and thereafter, on 6th February, applied for withdrawal of his earlier petition No 32/2019 pursuant to which prayer for withdrawal was allowed on 12th February.

Also seeks suspension of his sentence in

Al-Azizia case

He mentioned that subsequent to release of the petitioner on bail on Supreme Court order dated 26th March, he underwent multiple medical tests to ascertain the exact and precise extent and pervasiveness of the maladies from which he was suffering as necessitated before commencement of treatment. He said that after his medical tests, it was transpired that his health had considerably ‘deteriorated’ since his last medical check-up by the special medical boards constituted by the government of Punjab and accordingly, the treatment required for the petitioner was also much more complicated and extensive than it was at the time when the aforementioned special medical boards had examined.

Sharif’s counsel contended that his client’s life was under threat owing to his fast deteriorating health. He quoted doctors as saying that Sharif’s treatment was impossible inside prison. He also submitted the medical reports of Sharif along with the petition.

According to medical reports, doctors have said that Sharif’s condition is quite critical. The doctors have also claimed that Nawaz is suffering from numerous diseases that can prove to be threatening to the incarcerated former PM’s life.

The recommendations of specialist doctors hailing from the United Kingdom and the United States have also been attached with the plea.

The petition said quoting the doctors that Nawaz was facing life threats owing to his worsening health and his treatment was not possible in the prison while Sharif wanted to get himself treated from the same doctors who treated him in the past, abroad.

The petition maintained that political opponents were making propaganda that the petitioner, in seeking bail on medical grounds for this treatment abroad, was actually seeking for an ‘NRO’, was not only tantamount to contempt of court, it was also malicious and false to the knowledge of such politicians and TV anchors and stood comprehensively refuted by the past conduct of the petitioner. He prayed to the court to suspend the sentence awarded to him by the judge of accountability court and release him on bail pending final decision of his appeal against the said conviction and sentence, on such terms and conditions as are deemed to be just and fair in the facts and circumstances mentioned in the instant petition.