Govt withdraws petition against LHC verdict allowing Shehbaz to go abroad


ISLAMABAD – The federal government has taken back its petition filed in the Supreme Court against the Lahore High Court’s verdict allowing Leader of Opposition in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif to go abroad on medical grounds.

The Ministry of Interior had asked the apex court to declare the LHC ruling null and void as the PML-N president is facing corruption cases.

The petition was withdrawn when a two-member bench headed by Justice Ijaz ul Ahsan took up the matter and respondent assured the top court that he would not file contempt case against state institution for barring him to go abroad for treatment despite one-time permission from the LHC.

Attorney General for Pakistan Khalid Jawed Khan informed the court that the government was taking back its appeal as Shehbaz had decided to take back his petitions filed against the government in the high court.

The court remarked that the manner in which Sharif was allowed permission cannot become a precedent.

Justice Sajjad Ali remarked that the LHC had heard the views of the government when it issued the verdict last month.

The attorney general said that the government had not leveled any accusations against the high court in the petition, adding that the LHC’s verdict to set an example for future cases.

During the hearing, the registrar of the LHC said that Shehbaz Sharif’s petition was heard in one day after objections pertaining to the PML-N president leaving the country were turned down.

Federal Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said that since Shahbaz Sharif’s name is now on the ECL and he has withdrawn his petition from the high court and technically there is no need for a government appeal as the purpose is already served.

Last month, the high court had allowed Shehbaz to go abroad for treatment but he was stopped at the airport by immigration officials.

On May 17, the interior ministry put Shehbaz’s name on the Exit Control List (ECL) after the federal cabinet gave approval for it.

On May 7, the Lahore High Court (LHC) granted permission to PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif to go abroad on medical grounds.

A bench of the high court issued the verdict on a petition filed by Sharif seeking removal of his name from no-fly list.

However, the Federal Investigation Agency on Saturday barred him from going to London as his name was still on the blacklist despite the LHC orders.

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