Nawaz, Maryam to be put on ECL; decides cabinet

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Zahid Chaudhary

Islamabad

The new federal cabinet at its first meeting here on Monday decided to put the names of imprisoned former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam on the Exit Control List. Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired the cabinet meeting which also discussed economic challenges and austerity measures, among other matters. The cabinet also directed the law and interior ministries to implement red warrants against Nawaz’s sons, Hassan and Hussain, and former finance minister Ishaq Dar and bring them back to Pakistan, Fawad Chaudhry briefed the media after the cabinet meeting.
The law ministry has been directed to contact the British government over the Avenfield properties, Chaudhary added.
“Avenfield properties belong to Pakistan,” the information minister said, referring to one of the corruption cases against the Sharif family in which Nawaz was sentenced to a total of 11 years in prison while his daughter Maryam was given eight years’ sentence by an accountability court earlier in July.
“Eliminating corruption is an important part of our policy,” Chaudhry continued, adding that there will be no political appointments in Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s government.
The cabinet meeting also focused on implementation of the policy measures announced by PM Imran in his address to the nation on Sunday.
Fawad Chaudhary expressed hope that the party would also win the presidential election, which will be held on September 4. PTI has nominated Karachi leader Dr Arif Alvi as its presidential candidate. The minister said PTI will fully participate in the by-election on constituencies vacated by the victorious party lawmakers.
Chaudhry also commented on the government’s stance on relations with neighbouring countries, saying talks with China and India will continue. He also emphasised that relations with India would be based on state-level instead of any personal relations. Indian prime minister has written a letter to PM Imran, who has already stated that Pakistan would be ready to talk on all matters, including Kashmir issue, the information minister said.
Chaudhry detailed austerity plans by the government to be carried out by reducing official expenses. He said that the 88 vehicles for the PM House would be auctioned off and that a committee would be formed under Finance Minister Asad Umar to overview large residential government buildings. In addition, the government has withdrawn the facility of medical treatment abroad on state expenses of ministers. Foreign tours of ministers would also be limited, the minister said. PM Imran would not go on foreign visits for the first three months unless absolutely necessary, he added.

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