LAHORE                 -         The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday ordered Opposition Leader in National Assembly Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif to get himself tested for coronavirus from the Institute of Public Health (IPH) on July 2.

The court  also directed the IPH director for producing the test report before it, while extending interim bail of Shehbaz Sharif in assets beyond means and money laundering cases till July 7.

A division bench, headed by Justice Sardar Ahmad Naeem, passed the orders while hearing a pre-arrest bail petition by Shehbaz Sharif in the case.

At the start of proceedings, Shehbaz’s counsel submitted that an application for exemption from personal appearance had been filed on behalf of his client, in response to a court query.

He submitted that Shehbaz Sharif was a cancer survivor and his recovery was slow due to it. He stated that Shehbaz Sharif was still in isolation and he had coronavirus symptoms despite passage of 14-day period. He submitted that Shehbaz Sharif’s medical reports were also annexed with the application.

At this stage, the court observed that  since Shehbaz Sharif did not repeat the test, how it could be said that he still suffered from coronavirus. The court questioned that which laboratories had  coronavirus test facility in the city.

The counsel replied that Shaukat Khanum, Zeenat and other laboratories had coronavirus testing facility.

However, National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Prosecutor Syed Faisal Bukhari submitted that Shehbaz Sharif had still not signed the surety bonds.

He said that Shehbaz Sharif was scheduled to get tested for coronavirus on June 25, but he did not get himself tested. He submitted that Shehbaz Sharif would keep on asking for time in future also. He submitted that if the court considered appropriate, it should allow the application for exemption and hear arguments and decide the matter in absence of Shehbaz Sharif.

The court, after hearing arguments of parties, extended Shehbaz Sharif interim bail till July 7 and ordered him to get himself tested for coronavirus from IPH on July 2.

On June 3, the court had granted interim bail to Shehbaz Sharif in assets case and it was extended after he was tested positive for coronavirus.