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Avenfield, Al-Azizia hearing: Nawaz ordered to surrender, appear in IHC by Sep 9

Avenfield, Al-Azizia hearing: Nawaz ordered to surrender, appear in IHC by Sep 9
September 1, 2020
ISLAMABAD (92 News) - The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has ordered former prime minister Nawaz Sharif - who is currently in London - to surrender and present himself before court by September 9 during the Avenfield and Al-Azizia hearing. A two-member bench of the IHC comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani heard the Sharif family’s appeals against their sentences in the Avenfield and Al-Azizia cases. "We are not declaring Nawaz Sharif an absconder," said Justice Amir Farooq. "We are giving him an opportunity to surrender before court," he added. “This means you are telling him [Nawaz] to return,” Sharif family's lawyer Khawaja Harris said. To the reply, Justice Farooq said, “Do you know want us to give this chance to Nawaz Sharif?” "If you are afraid that NAB will arrest him upon his return then we can tell NAB to stop, the judge remarked. The court directed Nawaz to appear before the bench on September 9 and adjourned proceedings of the petition till September 10. Earlier, Nawaz Sharif has filed a plea in IHC for exemption from appearance in Avenfield and Al-Azizia references appeals hearing. Nawaz’s lawyer Khawaja Haris moved two miscellaneous applications in the IHC, stating that his client can’t appear before court tomorrow and requested exemption from personal appearance on his behalf on medical grounds. In his plea, PML-N quid requested court to grant him exemption and stated that he is receiving medical treatment abroad so it will not be possible for him to appear before court. He also assured the court that if the doctor gives him permission after recovery of health, he will return Pakistan in first flight. On the other hand, the NAB opposed the petitions filed by the former prime minister. The applications submitted to the IHC registrar will be taken up along the appeals tomorrow. A two-judge bench comprising Justice Aamir Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani will hear the case. The accused have been out on bail since Sept 19, 2018 when the IHC suspended the 10-year, seven-year, and one-year imprisonment handed down to Nawaz, Maryam, and Safdar, respectively by an accountability court on July 6, 2018. The Supreme Court later upheld the suspension of their conviction while rejecting the National Accountability Bureau’s (NAB) appeal against the high court’s decision.