Islamabad (Staff Report): The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday ordered former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and journalist Cyril Almeida to appear before the court on October 8 in a treason case.
A three-member bench of the high court, headed by Justice Mazahar Ali Naqvi, heard treason petition filed by Amina Malik, a civil society member, seeks action against Sharif under treason charges for allegedly trying to defame state institutions in an interview to a English daily, as well as action against former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi for allegedly not honouring his oath of office by disclosing the minutes of a National Security Council (NSC) meeting to Nawaz.
Abbasi appeared before the court to attend the hearing, while two other accused were absent.
The court also raised questions over Nawaz’ absence from the proceedings, to which, Sharif’s counsel Advocate Naseer Bhutta informed the court that his client was unable to attend the hearing as people were frequently visiting him to condole the death of his wife Begum Kulsoom Nawaz. He also urged the court to hold next hearing of the case after the Chehlum (fortieth day her death).
The judges directed that the ousted premier appear before the court in accordance with law and summoned him on Oct 8.
Expressing anger over Almeida’s absence, the LHC issued non-bailable arrest warrants for the journalist and adjourned the hearing until October 8.