Despite fresh notices issued to PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif in relation to the 1997 Supreme Court attack case, capital police are not optimistic about a breakthrough.
Police issued notices earlier this week on the directions of the interior ministry asking the Sharif brothers to appear before the senior superintendent of police (SSP) for interrogation within the next 10 days, a police official said.
However, before the notices were issued, the SSP had informed the ministry about lack of evidence in re-probing the case, the official added. “The SSP told the ministry that the move would give the Sharifs another excuse to embarrass the federal government as there was no solid evidence regarding their involvement.”
Sources in the police say Interior Minister Rehman Malik had himself directed SSP operations, Islamabad, Malik Yousuf to re-open the cases against the Sharif brothers regarding their alleged involvement in the attack on the Supreme Court in November 1997. The attack took place during contempt of court proceedings against then prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
The interior ministry gave directions to re-visit the case soon after Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani’s contempt case episode last month, following PML-N chief’s belligerent stance calling for the premier’s ouster.
PML-N’s information secretary Mushahidullah Khan said on Saturday that the PPP government was trying to prevent the opposition from unearthing its corruption by re-opening “decided” cases.
Khan maintains that the Sharif brothers have already been declared innocent by the capital police and the Supreme Court’s investigation commission. “The case was investigated by a team headed by Justice Nasir Aslam Zahid and the Sharif brothers were declared innocent,” he said in a statement issued by his office. He also alleged that the people who were found to be guilty were part of Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid’s team. “Rehman Malik should issue notices to his party’s allies.”
Sources said the capital police was not enthusiastic about continuing the investigations. “I personally think the government is not serious about reinvestigations either,” a police official commented on the condition of anonymity.
He added that the police were looking for further directions from the interior ministry before taking the next step.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 20th, 2012.
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