Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, who was on Monday taken into custody by police following an accountability court judgement, was shifted to Lahore's Kot Lakhpat jail amid tight security on Tuesday.
Sharif, who was being held at Rawalpindi's Adiala jail, was flown to Lahore this morning from Nur Khan Air Base, DawnNewsTV reported, citing jail sources.
The Punjab government had on Monday approved the provision of 'better class' jail facilities for Sharif. The better class prisoners are provided with a mattress, a study table and chair in addition to a TV set and newspaper.
A large number of PML-N supporters and workers gathered outside Kot Lakhpat jail to show their support for the former prime minister as he arrived at the premises.
Shortly after yesterday's conviction in the National Accountability Court's Al-Azizia corruption reference, Sharif's defence counsel sought a court order to shift him to Lahore jail instead of Adiala since the PML-N quaid is a heart patient and his personal physicians and family members are stationed in Lahore.
Although the prosecution had opposed the application saying that Adiala jail had been notified by the federal government for imprisoning convicts of Islamabad courts, the judge accepted Sharif's plea and said that since he had convicted him and was sending him to jail, he could make the decision at his own discretion.
The court accepted Sharif’s lawyer's request to shift him to Kot Lakhpat jail instead of Adiala jail, but said he would be sent to Adiala for the time being.
Upon reaching Adiala jail, jail doctors carried out a medical examination of the PML-N leader and found him physically fit.
Tight security had been put in place around the jail before the arrival of the former prime minister as Rangers were deployed at the police checkposts established on the route to the prison.
According to sources, the PML-N supreme leader was shifted to a 'better class' barrack which had been prepared on Sunday night ─ the same high security barrack where he had been kept after being convicted in the Avenfield property case on July 6, 2018, along with his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law retired Capt Mohammad Safdar.
However, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) later suspended the sentences of all three members of the Sharif family and they were released from jail on Sept 19 after spending 63 days in prison.
Today also marks Sharif's 69th birthday. The PML-N's provincial secretariats have planned celebrations in this regard, along with Christmas celebrations and the commemoration of Quaid-i-Azam's birthday.
Nawaz sentenced to jail in Al-Azizia reference
The PML-N supremo was sent back to jail on Monday after being sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for seven years along with a fine of Rs1.5 billion and $25 million in the Al-Azizia Steel Mills/Hill Metal Establishment reference, but was acquitted in the Flagship Investment reference.
Additionally, the accountability court barred him from holding public office for 10 years after completing the sentence, ordered confiscation of Hill Metal Establishment and issued perpetual warrants of arrest for his sons, Hussain Nawaz and Hassan Nawaz.
Accountability Judge Arshad Malik said that there was sufficient evidence that connected Sharif with the charges as "the accused has failed to discharge burden of proof, therefore, I convicted him under Section 9(a) (5) of the National Accountability Ordinance (NAO), 1999" in the Al-Azizia reference.
This was second conviction of the ex-premier this year, as he had been awarded 10 years imprisonment in the Avenfield Apartments reference in July.
With additional reporting by Javed Hussain.