Government respects court’s decisions, says PM Khan


–Fawad says bail ‘inappropriate term’ for Nawaz’s ‘six-week-long leave’ from jail

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan, while responding to Supreme Court’s (SC) decision of granting bail to former premier and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supreme leader Nawaz Sharif, said that the government respects the court’s decisions.

Earlier on Tuesday, a three-judge bench led by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Asif Saeed Khosa granted Nawaz bail for six weeks so that he may get medical treatment of his choice within the country. According to the short order, the former prime minister will have to surrender himself to jail authorities once the six weeks are over. If he fails to surrender, he will be arrested. Nawaz has further been barred from leaving the country.

Reportedly, PM Khan was informed about the apex court’s verdict during the meeting of the federal cabinet. He said that the government respects the court’s verdict. He also prayed for Nawaz’s health.

The prime minister also said that the government had already issued directives for the provision of the best health facilities for the PML-N supremo.

Meanwhile, Federal Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry said that the use of the term ‘bail’ seems inappropriate for the “six-week-long leave” granted by the apex court to the former prime minister on medical grounds. He said that the government fully respects the apex court’s decision.

“Nawaz Sharif’s narrative has been exposed fully; he does not suffer from illness, just stress. The chief justice raised a very valid question when he pointed out that Sharif is not alone in feeling stress — all inmates feel that.

“SC’s verdict is welcome. It is not much different from what we have been offering [to Nawaz]. We also said that Nawaz has the option to seek treatment in any hospital of his choosing. If they had listened to us, they would not have had to pay extra money to Khawaja Haris [for arguing Nawaz’s case].

“Nawaz also had the option of calling any foreign doctor of his choosing to Pakistan to get treated by them,” the minister noted.

In what seemed to be an overt offer for Nawaz to strike a plea bargain with the state, Fawad said that if Nawaz still wishes to go abroad, “Haris [his counsel] should advise him to return the country’s [looted] money.”