Monday, Apr 07, 2003
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By B. Muralidhar Reddy
The entire clan of the former Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, had to pack up and leave for Saudi Arabia after a deal with the Musharraf regime.
Cases against the former Prime Minister were withdrawn on the condition that he along with his family would move to Saudi Arabia and not dabble in politics of the country for ten years.
Mr. Shahbaz Sharif is the brother of Mr. Nawaz Sharif and Javeria is his elder daughter. It appears the girls have been allowed to return as they intend to get married. "The permission has been granted on humanitarian grounds. Nobody would be allowed to politically exploit the opportunity offered by the Government," the ruling party chief, Chaudhry Shujaat, told reporters.
Asked whether Mr. Shahbaz Sharif could also be permitted to return, the Pakistan Muslim League (Qaid-e-Azam) president said his case was "different". When it was pointed out that the family of Mian Abbas Sharif (one of Mr. Nawaz Sharif's brothers) had still not gone back to Saudi Arabia although it had come only for less than two weeks' stay here, Mr. Shujaat said the families should be treated differently (than their heads).
"We have come back to our country. We love our homeland," Nusrat Shahbaz, wife of Mr. Shahbaz Sharif, told reporters at Lahore Airport.
Mrs. Sharif said she and her daughters had nothing to do with politics. Salman Shahbaz, son of Mr. Shabaz Sharif, said his father who was now in the United States for post-operative care was also eager to come back.
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