Nawaz, Maryam targeted, says Shehbaz

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ISLAMABAD: PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif Monday reacted to the alleged audio clip of former chief justice Saqib Nisar, saying that the time has come to “right the wrongs” inflicted on ex-prime minister Nawaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz.

An alleged audio leak started doing the rounds on the internet Sunday night, in which then-chief justice Saqib Nisar can be heard allegedly telling another person that Nawaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz will have to be punished to make space for Imran Khan in politics.

Justice (R) Saqib Nisar had refused to accept that it was his voice and termed it fabricated. “The audio clip is being falsely associated with me,” he had said. In a tweet, Shehbaz Sharif said Justice (R) Saqib Nisar’s leaked audio tape had shown Maryam Nawaz and her father were “targeted as part of a grand scheme to keep them out of [the] political process.”

Urging relevant authorities to take action over the audio clip, the PML-N leader said,”The nation looks forward to the justice.” “Time has come to right the wrongs inflicted on them,” he added.

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Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that it was the mafia which was pressuring the judges to take decisions ‘as directed to them’. In the past too, these mafias attacked the judiciary. He expressed these views while chairing a meeting of the government spokespersons which discussed the alleged audio leak case of former chief justice Saqib Nisar. The prime minister directed the spokespersons to highlight the past history of PML-N’s attack against the judiciary. Prime Minister Imran Khan said that the government respected the institutions and stands by them.

In the meeting, Prime Minister Imran Khan expressed his determination to hold the next election on electronic voting machines. Instructing the spokespersons to take the people into confidence over EVM, the prime minister said that the next elections would be held on EVM in any case. The prime minister said that the obstacles in overseas voting should be removed, the issues of passports of Pakistanis abroad and Nikop should be resolved soon, as promised by the government with overseas Pakistanis.

Meanwhile, PDM Spokesman Hafiz Hamdullah said that the leaked audio clip associated with the former chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) Saqib Nisar and the claims made in former Gilgit-Baltistan chief judge Rana Shamim’s affidavit have put a “big question mark” on existing affairs.

The controversy began earlier this month when a former judge of the apex court in GB levelled serious allegations against former chief justice Saqib Nisar, stating in a notarised affidavit that he was witness to then CJP Saqib Nisar’s “direction to a high court judge not to release Nawaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz on bail at any cost before the 2018 general elections.” The seriousness of the matter intensified when an audio clip allegedly featuring Nisar was leaked in which a man could be heard saying, “Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz would have to be punished to make space for Imran Khan in politics.”

After a meeting of the PDM’s steering committee, the alliance’s spokesperson Hamdullah, while speaking to the media, said that the opposition had already expressed concerns regarding the “injustice” against the PMLN leadership. “Now it is the judges and judiciary who have to give an explanation/clarification,” said Hamdullah.

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