Pakistan court defers Nawaz Sharif's indictment in Panama Papers case after ruckus

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On Thursday, retired captain Muhammad Safdar, the son-in-law of the former prime minister, approached the Islamabad High Court (IHC) against his and wife Maryam Nawaz's scheduled indictment in a graft reference.

The NAB has in total filed three references against the Sharif family and one against Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in the accountability court, in light of the Supreme Court's orders in the Panama Papers case verdict of July 28. On this, Justice Bashir chose to prematurely halt court proceedings for the day and asked both defendants to leave the courtroom and return for a hearing on October 19.Talking to the media, Maryam Nawaz asked the Interior Ministry to come up with a strategy to avoid occurrence of such events in future. He dismissed the impression that the incident occurred as the members of PML-N Lawyers Wing had forced their way into the complex, saying that PML-N workers did nothing but the incident happened due to overcrowding at the gate.

A senior leader of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz (PML-N) said Sharif had nominated a representative to appear before the court to face the indictment and deny the charges. Sharif again failed to appear before the judge as he was in London with his ailing wife Kulsoom. Taking notice of the incident, the interior ministry asked Islamabad Police to compile a detailed report of the incident.

TV footages showed that Maryam and Safdar were present inside the court when lawyers created ruckus. She said she actually does not know where the incident occurred and who manhandled lawyers and what its objective was.

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On Monday, the NAB declared Sharif's sons, Hussain and Hassan, proclaimed offenders for repeatedly failing to appear before it.

Kulsoom, who is suffering from throat cancer, has undergone three surgeries in the United Kingdom so far.

He had to step down as prime minister and president of the PML-N party after being disqualified by the Supreme Court. He set Oct 13 for his, Maryam and Safdar's indictment.

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