A serious setback to Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif following the disclosure that his daughter and putative heir apparent, Maryam Sharif, had concealed ownership of the family's offshore assets and companies threatens to create new security complications for India, the Times of India said Thursday. In April, three judges of the five Supreme Court justices called for an investigation by a joint team made up of civil and military officials. The two dissenting judges were in favour of the Prime Minister's immediate disqualification. The court will begin verification of the documents provided by the investigative team on Monday, and Sharif's legal team is set to challenge the findings. The JIT found many documents offered by the Sharif family were misleading and even false.
The JIT also recommended reopening of another case the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) registered the same year of the same nature.
"The objections filed by the prime minister are valid as the JIT's report is contrary to fact", Zehri said while addressing a press conference.
However, the document raises eyebrows because it is dated February 2006 and typed in Calibri - a font that was not introduced until 2007. Adding that the documents thus accessed should be "inadmissible" in court as "the JIT members exceeded their jurisdiction and authority conferred by law in obtaining documents from overseas, inter alia, by hiring private firms and thereby have not only wasted public time but also public money in rendering an incomplete, inconclusive and legally untenable and inherently defective Report".
He warned that the government might try to attack the apex court and army, because these were the only two state institutions have had not been hijacked by the PML-N through the appointment of their "own people" to key posts. Daughter Maryam, who is seen as a potential succession leader of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz party, has disputed the allegations and said her father won't resign.
Sirajul Haq said the JI had been stressing that the Prime Minister had told a lie at the floor of the National Assembly and also before the court and should be disqualified under articles 62 and 63.
"It hurts that despite of our hard work, attempts are afoot once again to push the country back", Reuters cited Sharif as saying during a meeting of his ruling PML-N parliamentary party over the weekend.
If proven guilty, Sharif could remain in power until his term expires in 2018.
Now those opponents sense an opportunity to scupper any plans to build a Sharif dynasty around her after a Supreme Court-appointed panel accused her of committing a criminal offense in a 254-page report leaked to the media this week.