NAB references: Hearing adjourned due to police-lawyers spat outside accountability court

Former PM Nawaz Sharif

Former PM Nawaz Sharif

An anti-graft court in Pakistan today postponed the indictment of ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam and son-in-law Muhammad Safdar in Panama Papers case till October 19 due to protests by lawyers.

A scuffle erupted when security personnel barred lawyers and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders from entering the court after which the judges along with Justice Mohammad Bashir expressed resentment and left the court without hearing.

Talking to reporters after a hearing on Monday, Maryam Nawaz said that her brothers would make their own decision regarding their appearance before the court.

Nawaz Sharif, Hassan Nawaz and Hussain Nawaz are nominated accused in references regarding Park Lane Apartments, Al Azizia Steel Mills and offshore companies, while Maryam Nawaz and her husband Capt (retd) Safdar are nominated in reference regarding Park Lane apartments alone.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had registered three cases of corruption and money laundering against Sharif, 67, his family members and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in the Islamabad Accountability Court after the Supreme Court disqualified him as prime minister on July 28.

Soon after their arrival, a large number of PML-N lawyers and supporters attempted to enter the courtroom at the Federal Judicial Complex.

The court was expected to indict Nawaz Sharif's daughter and son-in-law. However, the court was expected to indict Maryam and Safdar as their case had been severed from that of her father and brothers - Hassan and Hussain.

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After appearing before the court Maryam had said that she was not afraid of getting arrested.

Sharif's lawyer Khawaja Harris asked the court to adjourn hearing for 15 days with commitment that Sharif would also appear.

The anti-graft body NAB had frozen the bank accounts and seized properties of Sharif and his family members to put pressure on them to appear before the court.

Earlier, the court was informed about Nawaz Sharif's absence.

Meanwhile, the accountability court has ordered inquiry of the incident on the application filed by Advocate Naeem Gujar.

Maryam, who is being groomed as Sharif's political successor, appeared in the court for the first time today.

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