Shifting the burden to judiciary

  • To subsequently malign it


That Nawaz Sharif suffers from several ailments, some of which could be life threatening if not treated properly and on time, is widely known. Besides proper medication, an inmate of the sort needs facilities in jail that attenuate the painful symptoms of ailments like diabetes, blood pressure, kidney stones, prostate and cardiac problems. As if Mr Sharif’s incarceration was not enough, the PTI government also wanted to torture him. As Imran Khan told a gathering of fans in the US that, in his Naya Pakistan. former President Zardari and former PM Nawaz will not be provided air conditioned rooms and homemade food. Lack of proper facilities led to deterioration in Mr Sharif’s condition. While provincial health minister Yasmeen Rashid’s claim that doctors in Pakistan can treat all sorts of ailments, Mr Sharif who was suffering from platelet related problems, had an angina attack on Friday night. Despite the government having the authority to give anyone, including even a murder convict, bail on medical grounds it preferred to shift the burden to the judiciary to avoid political embarrassment caused by claims of giving none any NRO.

Soon after LHC’s verdict to bail out Nawaz Sharif, a campaign was launched to malign the judiciary. There was talk about the relief being part of a deal. This led Islamabad High Court Chief Justice Athar Minallah to tell both the Punjab and Federal Governments that the court would refuse the bail provided they took responsibility that nothing untoward would happen to Mr Sharif till Tuesday. The Deputy Attorney General straightaway denied any role of the federal government in the case. Despite giving the Additional Advocate General several opportunities to contact Punjab CM to learn whether he supported or opposed the bail, he said the government was not willing to take any responsibility and the court should decide the case on merit.

The IHC court finally granted former PM Sharif interim bail on humanitarian grounds till Tuesday, when another IHC bench that is already dealing with the case will continue the hearing. Former President Asif Zardari too is suffering from several ailments. It is time his case was also considered by the indecisive government before the issue reaches the court.