Nawaz Sharif reaches Kot Lakhpat jail after massive roadshow
The bail expired on Tuesday midnight (May 7) with the apex court rejecting his review petition, seeking permission to go London for further treatment
Lahore: Former Pakistan prime minister Nawaz Sharif returned to jail on late Tuesday night after the expiry of his six-week bail. Sharif is serving a seven-year sentence in the Al-Azizia Mills corruption case. Hundreds of Pakistan Muslim League supporters gathered outside Sharif's Jati Umra residence and accompanied him to jail.
The procession took four hours to reach the Kot Lakhpat jail, which is otherwhise just 30 minutes away. Sharif was granted bail for six weeks by the Supreme Court "for treatment of his choice" for "a complicated heart and kidney disease". The bail expired on Tuesday midnight (May 7) with the apex court rejecting his review petition, seeking permission to go London for further treatment. After reaching jail, the three-time prime minister thanked his party workers for turning up in large numbers.
"I do not have words to thank the workers who turned up in thousands to express solidarity. It is midnight but the workers are still here with me. It is an amazing scene," he said in a message. Massive support for the PML-N leader was seen as large number of party workers, from different parts of Punjab province, turned up for the rally en-route to the jail. Sharif's daughter Maryam Nawaz accompanied her father in his car and posted images online of the reception their entourage got form the public. Maryam Nawaz tweeted, "The roads to the jail from Jati Umra were jampacked. Only heads and long queues of motorists." Amidst sloganeering in support of Sharif, party workers were seen showering rose petals at his car.
"The people know why I am being punished. What sin I have committed... they know. But I am optimistic that soon the black night of this oppression will end and I will get released from jail," Sharif said. Though Sharif was to reach jail before midnight, he reported half-an-hour late. The Punjab Home Department directed the jail authorities to receive Sharif and shift him to the barrack, officials said. An accountability court on December 24 last year handed a seven-year jail term to the former prime minister and a Rs 1.5 billion fine in the Al-Azizia corruption case. He was imprisoned in Adiyala Jail and shifted to Kot Lakhpat Jail on request.
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