Pakistan former prime minister Nawaz Sharif was shifted to the Kot Lakhpat jail in Lahore amid tight security on Tuesday, a day after he was sentenced seven years imprisonment in the Al-Azizia Steel Mills graft case. The anti-corruption court had said in its ruling that the three-time prime minister was unable to prove the source of income that led to his ownership of a steel mill in Saudi Arabia. Three cases - Avenfield properties case, Flagship investment case and Al-Azizia steel mills case - were launched against the Sharif family by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on September 8, 2017 following a judgment by the Supreme Court that disqualified Sharif in the high-profile Panama Papers case in July last year.
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The three-time former prime minister, who was taken into custody by police following the court judgement, was taken to Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi on Monday. Upon reaching Adiala jail, jail doctors carried out a medical examination of the PML-N leader and found him physically fit.
On Tuesday morning, Sharif was taken to Nur Khan Air Base amid tight security. Sharif was then flown to Lahore, where he was shifted to the Kot Lakhpat jail. Tight security had been put in place around the jail and Rangers were deployed at the police checkposts established on the route to the prison, news agency PTI reported.
"First Sharif was disqualified (by the Supreme Court) for not taking salary from his son and now convicted for receiving money from his son," former minister and senior Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Ahsan Iqbal said while addressing a press conference with other top PML-N leaders.
The first case in which Sharif was disqualified, the crime ascertained was that he did not take salary from his son, Iqbal said, adding this time the allegation levelled is that 'since your son sent you money, therefore you stand disqualified'.
Iqbal said that the reasons used to sentence Sharif could be used to criminalise every Pakistani living in the Gulf and sending remittances back home.
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"Now I want to raise this question that in the Middle East up to 3.5 million Pakistanis remit money to their families, so would they (families) be considered their business partners or co-owners? If any son sends money to his parents, will they be held guilty?" he asked.
In July, 2018 Sharif, his daughter Maryam and his son-in-law Captain (retd.) M Safdar were sentenced to 11 years, eight years and one year respectively in prison in the Avenfield properties case related to their purchase of four luxury flats in London through corrupt practices. However, the three were bailed out by the Islamabad High Court in September.