LAHORE: Lahore High Court Acting Chief Justice Mamoon Rashid Sheikh has allowed the personal doctor of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif to visit him in jail and conduct medical examinations under the supervision of jail medics.
Sharif’s physician, Dr Adnan, was allowed to visit once a week, along with Nawaz Sharif’s family members. However, the court restrained Dr Adnan from issuing political statements outside the jail after visiting the PML-N supremo.
The law officer told the court that doctors are available at the jail for the routine check up of Nawaz Sharif, adding no application had been submitted by the inmate to ask for permission to be examined by his personal doctor.
He further told the court that Nawaz Sharif was being provided with maximum facilities, especially when compared to other prisoners. The law officer told the court that the government had no objection over Dr Adnan meeting Nawaz. However, they were against the fact that he would start issuing statements after meeting the former PM.
Maryam Nawaz’s counsel, on the other hand, asked that the court allow Dr Adnan to meet Nawaz Sharif as a medical consultant. Earlier, PML-N’s vice president Maryam Nawaz filed a petition at the LHC, seeking orders for authorities to allow her and Dr Adnan to visit Nawaz in jail twice a week. The petition stated this was necessary to provide the necessary medical treatment.
In her petition, Maryam had complained to the LHC that her father told jail authorities about his deteriorating health due to angina, but they did not bother to cater to his medical needs. Maryam Nawaz named the Punjab government as a respondent through its chief secretary, additional chief secretary (Home), inspector general of prisons and superintendent central jail (Kot Lakhpat).
She told the court that her father is about 70 years of age and is suffering from multiple ailments, including hypertension as well as serious heart and kidney conditions. She added that these claims were supported by multiple reports filed by the Standing Medical Board before the Islamabad High Court and Supreme Court of Pakistan.
She contended that ever since the incarceration of Nawaz Sharif, the petitioner and his personal physician Dr Adnan had been regularly visiting him as per the schedule issued by the respondents.
The petitioner, however, later came to learn through media reports that the Punjab government had ordered the inspector general of prisons and superintendent of the central jail to restrict the visits to once a week. It was also pointed out that the visitors had to be related by blood and could not exceed five persons.
The petitioner argued that in view of the inmate’s serious and complicated ailments, Sharif needed frequent contact with Dr Adnan so that his medicine may be adjusted as per requirements. “It is unfortunate that for the last few weeks, jail authorities are not allowing Dr. Adnan to meet Nawaz Sharif, despite reminders and requests.”
Published in The Express Tribune, July 10th, 2019.