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Pak court issues notice to Sharif on petition seeking action for his Mumbai attack remarks

A Pakistani court has issued a notice to ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif on a petition seeking action against him for claiming that those involved in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack belonged to Pakistan.

In a petition filed in the Lahore High Court on Monday, advocate Azhar Siddique said Sharif, who was disqualified by the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers case in July last, in an interview to Dawn this May made the remarks that those involved in the Mumbai attack case actually belonged to Pakistan.

The petitioner said the “anti-state” statement of Sharif – a three-time prime minister – could be used against Pakistan by its enemies.

He said a meeting of the National Security Council (NSC) was held to discuss the ‘misleading’ statement of the disqualified premier and later the then prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi met Sharif and conveyed to him the concerns of the military leadership on his statement.

“The act of Abbasi was also a clear violation of his oath as he was bound not to allow his personal interest to influence his official conduct,” he said.

LHC Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi also issued notices to Abbasi and Dawn journalist Cyril Almeida, who published the interview of Sharif, to file a reply by June 29.

In the interview, Sharif had acknowledged that militant organisations are active in Pakistan and questioned the policy to allow the “non-state actors” to cross the border and “kill” people in Mumbai.

He also said, “We have isolated ourselves. Despite giving sacrifices, our narrative is not being accepted. Afghanistan’s narrative is being accepted, but ours is not. We must look into it.”

Pakistan’s National Security Committee – the top civil and military leadership – had condemned the “fallacious” statement by Sharif about the Mumbai attack and termed his remarks as “incorrect and misleading”.

Ten Lashkar-e-Taiba militants killed 166 people and wounded dozens in Mumbai in November, 2008. Nine of the attackers were killed by police while lone survivor Ajmal Kasab was caught. Kasab was executed after a court found him guilty and handed down death sentence.

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