PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz released on bail

LAHORE: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Nawaz was released on bail on Wednesday after her lawyers fulfilled requirements set forth by the Lahore High Court (LHC).

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According to details, Kot Lakhpat Jail officials issued the release orders that were later sent to Services Hospital for signatures.

An accountability court in Lahore on Wednesday issued the robkar (release orders) for PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz after confirming her surety bonds.

Accountability court judge Amjad Nazir Chaudhry issued the robkar to the Kot Lakhpat jail superintendent after checking the surety bonds submitted by guarantors Saiful Malook Khokhar and Faisal Ayub.

Maryam’s husband, retired captain Mohammad Safdar, was at the court to pick up the release orders. Following the issuance of the orders, judicial staff left for the jail, where, after completing legal proceedings, the release order will be sent to Services Hospital, where Maryam is currently held.

On Nov 4, Lahore High Court (LHC) granted bail to the PML-N leader on humanitarian grounds in the Chaudhry Sugar Mills case.

Justice Ali Baqar Najafi headed the division bench that reserved the verdict on Oct 31.

In its verdict, the court directed Maryam Nawaz to submit her passport with the court to secure her release, submit two surety bonds of Rs10 million each and deposit an additional Rs70 million.

“Since the prosecution has shown the bank statement of the […] petitioner in which on 28.11.2011 […] Rs7 crores were withdrawn and the prosecution has apprehension of fleeing away of the petitioner, therefore, to satisfy our judicial conscience we would pass a conditional order,” says the court’s written order, granting Maryam bail under under Article 199 of the Constitution.

Earlier today, during the hearing on bail plea, Maryam Nawaz’s counsel Amjad Pervez said the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has been subjecting the petitioner to double jeopardy and invoking the laws retrospectively.

He argued that Maryam has never been an active shareholder of the CSM while her uncle and cousin have been looking after business affairs after the death of her grandfather Mian Sharif who had established the mill in 1991.

All properties, business concerns and companies of the Sharif family including the CSM have already been investigated by a Joint Investigation Team formed by the Supreme Court of Pakistan in the Panama Papers case, added the counsel.

The JIT has not approved a reference regarding the CSM or assets owned by Maryam, he further added.

On August 8, NAB had arrested Maryam along with her cousin Yousaf Abbas in the Chaudhry Sugar Mills case.

On Aug 23, sources within the anti-graft watchdog had claimed that the bureau will soon write to relevant banks and other institutions, asking them to freeze the movable and immovable assets owned by both the accused.

Later, on Sept 26, they were sent to jail on judicial remand.

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