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13 October 2017, 10:41 | Erica Roy
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Chaos and racket by lawyers and supporters of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz forced the Accountability Court in Islamabad to postpone indictment of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif's daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Captain (retd) Safdar in a graft case on Friday.
Talking to reporters after a hearing on Monday, Maryam Nawaz said that her brothers would make their own decision regarding their appearance before the court.
The police had only allowed selected persons to enter the complex. They are of the view that whey lawyers are being stopped from entering the court despite the orders of the Islamabad High Court (IHC).
According to the affixed warrants of Hassan Nawaz and Hussain Nawaz outside court, they will be declared fugitives if they don't appear before accountability court within the duration of one month. However, the court was expected to indict Maryam and Safdar as their case had been severed from that of her father and brothers - Hassan and Hussain.
As a result of the ruckus, Judge Bashir made a decision to end court proceedings for the day and asked both defendants to leave the courtroom and return for the hearing on October 19.
"Those who want to appear by free will are arrested from airport, but we are not afraid of it", she said.
Following the clash, Maryam Nawaz was also permitted to leave the judicial complex while the indictment proceeding has been adjourned till October 19.
The court has chose to declare Hassan and Hussain fugitives in case they fail to appear before the accountability court within a month.
Later, an advocate, Naeem Gujar, filed an application to the judge for an inquiry into the incident.
Sharif's family has alleged that the cases are politically motivated.
On July 28, a five-judge larger bench of the Supreme Court, while disqualifying Sharif under Article 62 (1) (f) of the Constitution had asked the NAB to file four references in the Rawalpindi accountability court within six weeks on the basis of the material collected and referred to by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) as well as that already available with the Federal Investigation Agency and the NAB.
If convicted, the accused may face up to 14 years imprisonment and lifelong disqualification from holding public office including the freezing of bank accounts and assets.
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