'10-yr-ban on politics' claim "highly ridiculous" for politically active Nawaz: PML-N

Islamabad, Dec 3 (ANI): Denying the statement in a cable released by WikiLeaks that former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was under a ten-year ban on taking part in politics, the Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) has issued a detailed "fact-sheet" highlighting various political activities in which Sharif had participated during his days in exile.

"Certain political opponents and anti-democracy elements are now claiming Nawaz Sharif had, under some obnoxious bilateral accord, been restrained from pursuing active politics for a period of 10 years and the stipulated ban had ended on Thursday, is highly ridiculous and absurd for a person who had devoted his life to change the destiny of the people and bring Pakistan in the comity of honourable nations," the Dawn quoted the fact-sheet, as saying.

"The fact, on the contrary, is that the PML-N Quaid has not, even for a single moment, quit active politics after his government, chosen by the people, was overthrown by the dictator," it added.

"One wonders what kind of the ban on Nawaz Sharif's political participation was that he addressed as many as 37 election rallies in election campaign and also held huge public meetings for the subsequent by-elections", said the fact-sheet, adding, "The story does not end here. Nawaz Sharif signed as a PML-N chief the milestone Bhurban accord on Mar 9, 2008. If this was not politics what else it can be termed."

On the other hand, the ruling Pakistan People's Party (PPP) Information Secretary, Fauzia Wahab, felicitated the former premier over the completion of the 10-year agreement that he had signed in the year 2000 before leaving the country for Saudi Arabia.

"It is a day of happiness for the PML-N that the ban on Nawaz Sharif over taking part in active politics has been lifted," Wahab said in a statement, which was apparently issued in an effort to nullify the PML-N fact-sheet issued earlier.

Wahab said that the PPP could understand the mental torture through which the PML-N chief would have passed at the time of signing the deal, after which he had to leave Pakistan, leaving his party members in a lurch.

"We can realize the agony which Mr Sharif would have faced when Prince Maqran of Saudi Arabia and Saad Hariri from Lebanon had held a news conference in Islamabad reminding Mr Sharif about his "exile agreement" with Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf," she said. (ANI)

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