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Panamagate verdict – scandal bites but Sharif stays in power

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Islamabad: Panamagate is being celebrated in two very different ways by ruling Muslim League (N) and opposition parties including Imran Khan led Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and Asif Zardari led Pakistan Peoples Party. This is a ruling that has given respite to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as the majority of the judges are against his removal for lack of evidence against him.

There is no denying that it has come as a breather for the Pakistani Prime Minister who seem to have outlived many dangers to his reign over the last several years. Despite his lack of charisma, Prime Miniter Nawaz Sharif has given a much better government to Pakistan than his predecessors under Pakistan People’s Party government that was not just mired in corruption but destroyed Pakistani infrastructure brick by brick.

Nawaz Sharif government, despite huge challenges posed by terrorism and inept handling of important institutions by the previous government has succeeded in bringing back a semblance of normalcy to the daily lives of Pakistanis across much of the Muslim nation.

Imran Khan, who has proved himself to be a reckless freak over the years has demanded Nawaz sharif to resign from his post. He has asked Nawaz Sharif to resign for the duration of an investigation into how the Sharif family’s money was transferred to Qatar.

“I demand Nawaz Sharif resign… Until the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) completes its probe…If you’re cleared within 60 days, you can return,” thundered Imran Khan

It should be kept in mind that the Pakistani apex court verdict was split 3-2 among a five-judge bench, with two dissenting notes in the judgement by Justice Asif Saeed Khosa and Justice Gulzar Ahmed. The two judges ruled against PM Nawaz Sharif, saying he should be disqualified, whereas the other three were in favour of forming a JIT.

But this didn’t stop Khan from claiming that the court was completely against Nawaz Sharif “All five judges have decided that whatever Nawaz Sharif said, it has been rejected. The money trail, the sources of income ─ everything is in front of the nation… In other words, it has been declared a falsehood…The two most senior judges said to disqualify the PM,” he claimed. However, “they [the PML-N] are giving out mithai over the fact that two judges have said he is dishonest.” He went on to add that “Five judges have dismissed their defence – is this what you are celebrating?”.

On the other hand, Asif Ali Zardari, apparently the most corrupt leader in the entire history of Pakistan also demanded Sharif’s resignation. “Nawaz Sharif should hand in his resignation,” former president Asif Ali Zardari said while addressing a press conference. “I condemn the [court’s] decision…Mian sahab you have failed. You cannot run the government. Give someone else a chance to run the government…A decision which the Supreme Court could not make, how will the Grade-19 officers under the PM decide the case?” said he.

He went on to add, “They have no concerns except their own enjoyment…Why are they distributing sweets? Because two senior judges said you [PM Nawaz Sharif] should be disqualified? Is this why you are eating mithai?…You have deceived the nation”.

He expressed his hope that Imran will join hands with him saying, “Imran Khan, we told you to join us and form legislation and then take it to the court,” he said. “But he [Khan] does not listen. He has never been to jail, he does not know how judges work, how justice works…We believe that if Pakistan is not safe in the hands of Nawaz Sharif, it is also not safe in the hands of Imran Khan…I am disappointed by Imran Khan leaving us and going to the SC alone. If Aitzaz Ahsan stood there and argued against them [the Sharif family], then the decision might have been different…We will see what other political forces decide, and the people’s decision will also guide us…I think it is evident now to the nation that Nawaz’s real face is not sharif,” Zardari said.

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