London doctor says can’t advise Nawaz to fly back home

By: News Desk      Published: 04:38 PM, 9 Sep, 2020
London doctor says can’t advise Nawaz to fly back home

Dr David Lawrence, the doctor responsible for the treatment of the three-time prime minister Nawaz Sharif in London, said he could not suggest his patient for travelling to Pakistan in the current condition, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

In a medical report attached with the petition seeking review of the surrender order earlier issued by the Islamabad High Court (IHC), the well-respected doctor said Nawaz needed even more precaution amid the coronavirus pandemic and he should crowded places like airports.

In this connection, Dr Lawrence – who is associated with the famous The Harley Street Clinic as a consultant cardiothoracic surgeon – again mentioned that the treatment of Nawaz would start only after the hospital routine was restored.

It is worth noting that the hospitals in the United Kingdom like other parts of Europe had stopped unnecessary procedures [treatment related to ailments that are not life threatening] after the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic. However, things are returning back to normal albeit slowly.

That is why Nawaz on the basis of this report requested the IHC on Wednesday to review to its earlier decision in which he was ordered to surrender before the court in connection with the Al Azizia reference.

In a petition filed through his trusted legal counsel Khawaja Haris, the former premier argued that he should be allowed to pursue the case in the hearing of the appeal filed against his conviction and sentencing in the reference.

According to a latest medical report dated September 4, 2020 attached with the plea, Nawaz is suffering from multiple and aggravated ailments including blood pressure and cardiac issues. Therefore, he requires further treatment in London for which the Lahore High Court (LHC) had ordered the government to remove his name from the exit control list (ECL).

The court has been moved as Nawaz is supposed to appear a two-member IHC bench on Thursday (September 10).

Earlier on September 1, the IHC ordered the former prime minister to surrender before the court as it rejected a plea filed to get an exemption from appearing in person at the hearing of appeals filed against his conviction.

Moreover, the judges also sought a reply from the government about the bail issue of Nawaz till September 10 and remarked that the hearing of appeals could move ahead only if he appeared before the court. 

The two-member bench said the court wasn’t declaring him an absconder/proclaimed offender and that he had another chance to avail the opportunity before that. In case of a failure, it added, the process would be started to declare an absconder.

The petition for exemption was filed as the bench comprising Justice Aamer Farooq and Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani started hearing the appeals related to his conviction in the Al-Azizia and Avenfield references.

Justice Kayani remarked that they would pass necessary orders in case Nawaz feared that he would be arrested on his arrival in Pakistan.

Also, the IHC separated the appeals filed by PML-N Vice-president Maryam Nawaz and her husband Captain Safdar in the Avenfield reference from that of Nawaz, stopping them to appear before the court. In this connection, their appeals would now be heard on September 23.

The same bench is also hearing a petition filed by NAB against the acquittal of Nawaz in the Flagship reference.

During the hearing, Khawaja Haris argued against issuing the orders on Tuesday before the next hearing, saying that what would happen if his client submitted a report by then.

Although he admitted that Nawaz is no more on bail but added that he was under treatment in London and the government did not send any official from the Pakistani High Commission in London – as suggested in the original LHC orders allowing him to leave the country – to verify the facts.

In the petition, the former prime minister had said that the Punjab government was politicised his health issue and acted maliciously as part of a planned strategy. Thus, the application for suspending the sentence after the expiry of two months was rejected, it added.

“However, in terms of the Hon’ble Lahore High Court’s order dated November 16, 2019, periodical medical reports of the applicant showing that he had still not regained his health were continuously filed with the learned registrar.”

It added that the last medical report submitted to the court showed that the PML-N supremo did not regain his health and had effectively been advised to remain in the UK for treatment.