ISLAMABAD: An Islamabad High Court (IHC) bench took up today a petition filed by former prime minister Nawaz Sharif challenging his non-bailable arrest warrants issued by an accountability court in Toshakhana reference.
A two-judge bench comprising IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Aamer Farooq heard the petition.
The court directed the former premier’s lawyer to present a Punjab government notification permitting his client to proceed abroad for medical treatment.
The chief justice recalled that it was not court that struck Sharif’s name off the Exit Control List (ECL), but the government, adding the high court gave the ex-PM permission to go abroad for treatment for eight weeks.
The hearing was adjourned until Thursday.
Nawaz Sharif, who is currently in London, moved the petition through Barrister Jahangir Khan Jadoon, citing NAB chairman, judge of the accountability court-III and the investigation officer in the Toshakhana reference as respondents.
The petitioner stated that the IHC granted him bail on October 9, 2019 on medical grounds yet the accountability court initiated the process of declaring him a proclaimed offender under Section 87 of the criminal procedure code (CrPC).
The former premier said he went to the UK on November 19, 2019 for medical treatment with the approval of the government. Nevertheless, non-bailable arrest warrants were issued in the case, depriving him of his constitutional and fundamental rights as he didn’t conceal himself from any process of the law, he added.
He requested the high court to declare the arrest warrants illegal and allow him to join the proceeding of the accountability court through his pleader.
The accountability court of Islamabad had issued non-bailable arrest warrants for Sharif over his failure to attend the trial proceeding in the case and had also initiated the process to declare him a proclaimed offender.