ISLAMABAD - In an unexpected move former prime minister Nawaz Sharif will land back in the country Monday morning and will appear before an accountability court on Tuesday in the corruption references against him and his family members.

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, who was also in London, will also be returning back in the small hours of Monday (today) in a special plane along with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi. He will also appear before the accountability court in the assets-beyond-means case against him today, confirmed the sources in the ruling PML-N.

The decision of Nawaz and Dar’s return to face the courts was taken by the PML-N bigwigs in their Sunday’s London meeting, – attended by Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif, PM Abbasi, Foreign Minister Kh Asif, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and others.

Importantly, the meeting also decided to stop confronting the state intuitions to make an enabling environment for eventual deliverance of Sharif family from the trouble they are in, sources told The Nation.

The former premier decided to take a private flight and avoided returning with the PM Abbasi as he did not want media and his political opponents make an issue out of it, a senior party leader informed.

Minister for Climate Change Mushahidullah Khan confirmed the arrival of Nawaz in Islamabad on PIA flight PK-786 at 7:45am Monday, but he did not confirm if he would appear in the accountability court.

However, ex-PM’s son Hussain Nawaz confirmed to the media that his father would be appearing in the court on Tuesday (Sept 26).

There were speculations that Sharifs could avoid appearing in the accountability courts like they kept off the NAB investigation – dubbed by the top party leaders an exercise to victimise the former ruling family.

Even in her interview with a private television channel Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz had called the accountability trial a farce and said they would not join it as they had done during the NAB investigation before filing of references in the court.

Maryam on Sunday took to Twitter to state: “Knowing what he faces is NOT accountability, the man decides to return. It is not about his person anymore. It is the battle of 200 million. It takes great amount of courage & valour to be willing to pay the price for challenging what needs to be changed. Not everyone can do that.”

The court has issued summons to former premier’s sons Hassan and Hussain Nawaz, daughter Maryam and son-in-law Muhammad Safdar, but they won’t be appearing in the court.

They all are in London to take care of Nawaz Sharif’s wife Kalsoom Nawaz – who is receiving treatment for lymphatic cancer.

The children would be staying back in London to look after Begum Kalsoom and her treatment would take some more time, a senior party leader informed The Nation.

He said that former premier would place the details of her wife’s ailment and treatment before the court to avoid unilateral action against the family.

Sources said that on Nawaz’s appearance before the court the defendants’ lawyers would seek exemption from personal appearance in the corruption cases, which most likely would be granted to the Sharif family members.

Sources aware of the deliberations of the party leaders in London informed that former PM decided to return on the advice of his political and legal aides who believed there would be enormous political damage by the issuance of the arrest warrants for the Sharif family over non-compliance with the court orders.

Sources further informed that senior lawyer Kh Haris - who had represented Nawaz Sharif in the Panama case after the presentation of the JIT report and later had also filed review petition on his behalf - had advised the former prime minister to appear before the court as abstaining from it would only spoil his case.

Later, during the huddle of the senior party leaders, various options including abstaining the court proceedings came under threadbare discussion and finally in the last session it was decided that both Nawaz and Dar would immediately return and face the trials.

The meeting further decided to tone down the harsh position the party had taken against establishment. All the senior party leaders would be communicated to stop giving provocative comments and remarks against the institutions, they agreed.

These sources said that the saner elements in the party were of the view that by turning the institutions against the party they would only add to their problems, so, instead of locking horns with the institutions the party should carve out a way forward to get out of the political and legal quagmire facing the top party leadership.

As for Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, the legal experts saw no hurdle in confirmation of his bail from the court as the court had issued bailable arrest warrants for him.

However, judge Mohammad Bashir warned that if Dar failed to appear on Sept 25, non-bailable arrest warrants would be issued for the accused. The court had further directed Dar to furnish a bail bond of Rs1 million and a personal surety to secure bail.

The minister would need to meet this requirement when he appears before the court today (Monday), a Supreme Court lawyer Ajam Naz commented.

Sources said that former premier Nawaz Sharif would likely present his case before the court on his own and would explain to the court the reasons for his failure to appear before the court when summoned for the first time by the court.

He would also prayed to the court for granting time to his children to join the court proceedings as all of them were with their mother in London in connection with her treatment and it was expected that court would take lenient view of it, the lawyer further said.

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Nawaz Sharif in the Panama case after the presentation of the JIT report and later had also filed review petition on his behalf - had advised the former prime minister to appear before the court as abstaining from it would only spoil his case.

Later, during the huddle of the senior party leaders, various options including abstaining the court proceedings came under threadbare discussion and finally in the last session it was decided that both Nawaz and Dar would immediately return and face the trials.

The meeting further decided to tone down the harsh position the party had taken against establishment. All the senior party leaders would be communicated to stop giving provocative comments and remarks against the institutions, they agreed.

These sources said that the saner elements in the party were of the view that by turning the institutions against the party they would only add to their problems, so, instead of locking horns with the institutions the party should carve out a way forward to get out of the political and legal quagmire facing the top party leadership.

As for Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, the legal experts saw no hurdle in confirmation of his bail from the court as the court had issued bailable arrest warrants for him.

However, judge Mohammad Bashir warned that if Dar failed to appear on Sept 25, non-bailable arrest warrants would be issued for the accused. The court had further directed Dar to furnish a bail bond of Rs1 million and a personal surety to secure bail.

The minister would need to meet this requirement when he appears before the court today (Monday), a Supreme Court lawyer Ajam Naz commented. Sources said that former premier Nawaz Sharif would likely present his case before the court on his own and would explain to the court the reasons for his failure to appear before the court when summoned for the first time by the court.

He would also prayed to the court for granting time to his children to join the court proceedings as all of them were with their mother in London in connection with her treatment and it was expected that court would take lenient view of it, the lawyer further said.