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Archive for category NAWAZ SHARIF FAMILY TURPITUDE

Ishaq Dar’s confessional statement

To 
The Chairman NAB
20 April 2000

Subject: Tender of Pardon

Dear sir

I the undersigned want to make full disclosure of the true and full facts relating to the case of Hudabiya Paper Mills case wherein I have been cited as one of the accused person. My detailed statement of facts, circumstances and events etc leading to accumulation of Rs 642 million in the accounts of Hudabiya Paper Mills Ltd is enclosed herewith for your kind perusal and consideration.

I have unburdened my concious and stated the true facts in the enclosed statement. It is therefore requested that I may please be granted pardon on the basis of this disclosure.

Thanking you in anticiptation

Yours truly

Ishaq Dar
7-H Gulberg 3
Presently at Police lock up at Chamba House Lahore
20 April 2000

Statement of Mohammad Ishaq Dar on oath dated 25 April 2000

I was born in a middle class family in 1950. I passed my intermdeiate in 1966 and then B.Com in 1970 after which I proceeded to UK to pass my Chartered Accountancy. During my stay in London I stayed with Masood Ahmed Kazi  and his family in Ilford. In 1976 I proceeded to Libya where I worked as senior auditor. I was married in 1976. Financial status of mu in-laws was also that of middle class. In 1977 I came back to Pakistan and joined a Chartered Accountancy company. 

From 1982 to 1992, besides my job activities I remained actively associated with the activities of Institute of Chartered Accountants as well as Lahore Chamber of Commerce. In the year 1987-88 I was member of Finance and Taxation Committee of LCCI. Around same period Mian Shehbaz Sharif was President of LCCI. I pointed out serious weaknesses in the national budget announced by Junejo Govt for the year 1987-88 which resulted in revision of the budget. This gave me national recogonition. Next year I was again consulted and my suggestions were incorporated in the budget.

In 1990, I planned to set up a Modaraba company in the name of First Hajvery and started completing its paperwork. The company was set up in 1991 with paid up capital of Rs 150 million. Within 6 monthswe succeeded in attracting customers like Sharif Group, Crecent Group and Saigol Group.

My stay with the family of Masood Ahmed Qazi in London had been a pleasant one. They belonged to a middle class family and he used to treat me as one of his family members. The family comprised of Sikandra Masood Qazi (wife), Gohar Masood Qazi (son), Mazhar Masood Qazi (son), Kashif Masood Qazi (son) Talat Masood Qazi (son). As far as their financial status in the year 1992 is concerned, there was no significant improvement in their previous status of 1970s. The family offered tution services and some family members were running a garment store.

Mian Nawaz Sharif was my batch mate at Govt College during 1964 to 66. However we had no intimacy at that time. As by the year 1990 I had not only succeeded in getting my professional skills recogonized but also was associated with activities of LCCI and Mian Shehbaz Sharif was former President of LCCI, we soon came closer.

In December 1990, Qazi family was visiting Pakistan. As Mr Masood Qazi was interested in politics and used to introduce himself as a Muslim Leauger, I invited them to the annual function of LCCI which was to be chaired by Mian Nawaz Sharif, the then PM of Pakistan. In this function I introduced the Qazis to Mian Nawaz Sharif and Mian Shehbaz Sharif. 

In early 1992, Mian Nawaz Sharif who was then PM contacted me and requested to provide credit line of approximately Rs 100 million to the buisness concerns of his family from my Modaraba. I enquired from him about the collateral against this credit line. He informed me that he will 

provide foriegn currency funds as collateral. Subsequently he sent me photocopies of the passports of Mrs Sikandra Qazi, Nuzhat Qazi, Talat Qazi and Kashif Qazi. He asked me to open / open coreign currency accounts in their names in different banks with the foreign currency funds provided by the Sharif family and use these funds as collateral against credit facility to be availed by the different companies of Sharif group from my Modaraba and also directly from the banks as well. The need for opening of different accounts mainly arose due to per client lending ceiling, per deposit lending limit, bank’s overall credit ceiling and per borrower credit ceiling etc.

I had reservations in opening / operating of these benamidar accounts but I was assured by Mian Nawaz Sharif that Qazis have agreed for use of their names and furthermore after the promulgation of Protection of Economic Reforms Act 1992 by his govt, all the foreign currency accounts had complete immunity against any inquiry or investigation by any department or agency. 

Resultantly I was asked by Mian Nawaz Sharif to open 4 benamidar accounts in the names of Sikandra Qazi, Talat Qazi, Nuzhat Qazi and Kashif Qazi. It was further decided that these accounts in the name of first two persons will be opened/ operated by me whereas the other two benaami accounts will be opened / operated by Naeem Mahmood, a Director of my Modaraba, under my supervision.

Accordingly I opened two foreign currency accounts in the name of Sikandra and Talat Qazi with the foreign currency funds provided by Sharif family in the Bank of America by signing as Sikandra and Talat Qazi. All the instructions issued to the bank in the name of these persons were signed by me under the instructions received from the original depositors namely Mian Nawaz Sharif and Mian Shehbaz Sharif. Wheras the F.C Accounts of Nuzhat and Kashif Qazi were opened/ operated by Naeem Mahmood under my instructions ( based on instructions of Sharifs) by signing the same as Nuzhat Qazi and Kashif Qazi.

Besides these four F.C accounts, the previously opened F.C Account of Saeed Ahmed, a former Director of First Hajvery Modarba and a close friend of mine, and of Musa Ghani ( nephew of my wife) were also used to deposit huge foreign currency funds provided by the Sharif family to offer them as collateral to obtain different direct / indirect credit lines. It is pertinent to mention that all the instructions regarding the deposits of the Sharif family in the account of Saeed Ahmed were got executed from Mr Saeed Ahmed at the relevant time. However in order to operate the deposits in the account of Musa Ghani, I signed few instructions in the name of Musa Ghani.

The credit lines obtained by First Hajvery Modarba against these foreign currency funds of Sharif family offered as collateral were given to Sharif Group companies in Pak Rupees at cost plus small charge to cover the administrative expenses of the Hajvery modarba. The Sharif Group companies utilized full credit lines against these foreign currency collateral directly from the banks or by indirectly obtaining credit lines in Pak Rupees in the name of Hajvery modaraba, Sikandra Qazi, Hajvery Holdings, myself and Musa Ghani etc. All the credit lines in these names were ultimately passed on to the Sharif Group companies. Different other accounts were also opened / operated by me and Naeem Mahmood in the same manner in the names of Qazis as explained above in City Bank, Emirates Bank, Atlas Investment Bank and Al Towfeeq Investment Bank etc under the instructions of Sharif family.

In the last quarter of 1993, Bank of America faced credit ceiling problem and thus it arranged the transfer of these credit facilities / collateral to the Al Faiysal Investment Bank with the approval of Sharif family. All the instructions regarding the operation of F.C account of Talat Qazi were executed /supplied by me to the Al Faysal Bank. Regarding the operation of the F.C accounts of Kashif Qazi and Nuzhat Qazi at Al Faysal were executed by Naeem Mahmood under my instructions.

In early 1998,  Mian Shehbaz Sharif called a meeting at his residence which was attended by Kamal Qureshi, both Pashas and other relevant staff. I was also asked by him to participate. Mian Shehbaz Sharif told us that due to scandalization of Qazis accounts by the press, his family has decided to liquidate all the F.C funds in these accounts and bring the same back in the account of Hudabiya Paper Mills Limited as Share Deposit Money from a lady of middle east and use it to pay off all loans of Sharif Group. He gave directions to Kamal Qureshi to take all necessary steps to carry out this plan. I was asked to provide Kamal Qureshi necessary instructions for banks to get the funds in these accounts encashed. Mian Shehbaz Sharif subsequently sent a photocopy of passport of that lady which disclosed her name as Siddiqa Hashim Khadim, to me and sending the same to Kamal Qureshi for necessary action as per his directions. I handed over the same to Naeem Mahmood and also briefed him about the instructions I received from Mian Shehbaz Sharif. I asked him to contact Emirates Bank and to obtain the latest position of the loans directly / indirectly obtained from the bank by Sharif Group against the F.C funds deposited by them in the account of Mr Saeed Ahmed. I further asked him to make liaison with Kamal Qureshi for this purpose. Naeem Mahmood subsequently told me that a sum of U.S $ 3.725 million of Sharif family was existing in the account of Saeed Ahmed in Emirates Bank. He further informed me about the arrangements Kamal Qureshi was carrying out regarding the encashment of this amount according to which, with the help of bank manager, services of a money changer to provide remittances equivalent to these F.C funds from abroad as Share Deposit Money from Siddiqa Hashim Khadim, from his own sources into the accounts of Hudabiya Paper Mills were to be acquired and the proceeds of these remittances were to be transferred to accounts of First Hajvery Modarba by borrower company for settlement of loan facilities of Sharif group companies. 

Subsequently the dollars in the account of Saeed Ahmed held as collateral were to be released by the bank for onward delivery to the money changer / broker. He further informed me that in March/ April 1998, a sum of US $ 3.725 million was received in the form of telegraphic transfer in the account of Hudabiya Paper Mills and equivalent foreign currency funds were got released by the Sharif family from the account of Saeed Ahmed for delivery to the broker. Similarly the deposits in the accounts of Qazi family at Al Faysal bank was also to be off loaded by unwinding the transactions in the same manner as was done at Emirates Bank. 

Following the directions of Mian Shehbaz Sharif, Kamal Qureshi approached the bank in Karachi for making necessary arrangement whereby the deposits kept in the name of Qazi family was also to be substituted and a new name that of Siddiqa Hashim Khadim was to be introduced and shown as equity investment ( share deposit money) in Hudaibiya Paper mills limited. However, out of the said amount of $8.539 million only $2.95 million could be routed in this manner by Sharif family through Kamal Qureshi from al Faysal Bank. Thereafter F.C accounts were frozen by the Govt. Before the encashment of entire collateral could be completed, in May 1998 Pakistan’s first nuclear tests took place and foreign currency funds were frozen by the Govt. 

Resultantly the previous plan of Sharif family could not be 100 percent executed. In June 1998, Mian Shehbaz Sharif informed me that accounts in the name of Qazis amounting to $ 2.967 million and $ 2.622 million should be got converted into Pak Rupees and deposited in the account of Hudabiya Papers as Share Deposit Money from Qazis. I and Naeem Mahmood prepared necessary instructions for the banks in this behalf. Kamal Qureshi then arranged for such frozen amounts with Citibank and Al Faysal Bank to be encashed in the name of the Qazis and at a final rate of Rs 46 per and the sum of US $ 6.91 million equivalent to Pak Rs 318 million was transferred to the account of Hudabiya Papers as Share Deposit Money from Qazis.

Although the foreign currency collateral accounts were arranged by me and Naeem Mahmood as per instructions of Shahbaz Sharif for above explained facilities, the fullest involvement of the directors, management and staff of Sharif group companies had always been there as it were they who opened in all the lending financial institutions, the bank accounts of various companies of Sharif group, in whose names Pak Rupees credit lines were obtained and who also completed all the legal requirements of the banks and of Company Law in this regard.

The entire chain of transactions, starting from the deposits of foreign currency collateral, obtaining credit lines, loans for Sharif group companies including Hajvery Modarba, encashment of entire collateral in 1998 and deposit of same in Hudabiya Paper Mills as Share Deposit Money in names of Sidiiqa Hashim Khadim and Qazi family and ultimately using such Share Deposit Money to pay off the liabilities of Sharif Group companies, clearly establish the fact that all these foreign currency funds exclusively belonged to Sharif family who were the sole beneficiary of the entire arrangement and being difficult for them to account for the same, they had made all this arrangement as they could not have explained the source of these funds which ultimately landed in one of their companies. 

It is assured that I have made full disclosure of all the facts in the preceding paras pin-pointing the money laundering of the Sharif family and my role therein. In proof thereof you may obtain specimen of signatures of mine and that of Naeem Mahmood to get the veracity of my statement regarding the operation of the accounts of Qazi family testified from a Hand Writing Expert.

I solemnly declare that I have never obtained any illegal personal benefit out of these funds and the money was / is owned by the Sharif family.

Signed 

Ishaq Dar

25 -4-2000

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If wishes were horses, beggars would be…   Haider Mehdi’s Perspectives

If wishes were horses, beggars would be…

By Syed Haider Raza Mehdi

Nawaz Sharif’s Act of Treason: Launching an undeclared War on Pakistan Armed Forces with the backing of US & India
I think it’s getting close to one Qabar and two bodies.

Nawaz’s aim is political martyrdom.

As long as he controls the party he will continue to create chaos.

But, as history tells us, this great land of Punjab knows which side of the paratha has more ghee.

And with each passing day as the power struggles between the brothers Sharifs and other groups within PMLN  intensify we will see his grip loosening.

This will make Nawaz and especially Princess Tubelight Maryam Safdar, even more desperate and they will resort to desperate measures. To understand Nawaz one only has to recall his instructions to Sohail Zia Butt many years ago.

“Butt saheb Thoray jeean golian sholian….thay Thora jiaa khoon kharrapa!”

Therefore, I have a feeling of great disquiet. A sense of, God Forbid, a major urban terrorist attack and or some highly potent acts of violence. Perhaps even attempts at assassinations. These could be across, political, ethnic, sectarian and religious divides to create more chaos and disorder.

Some orchestrated by PMLN and some by our “friendly” neighbours, India and Afghanistan and our Godfather, the USA.

The last mentioned, continously attempting to keep Pakistan unstable, through political unrest and economic meltdown, create civil unrest, weaken Pakistan and achieve their ultimate objective of defanging us of our nuclear assets.

Iran will likely not try anything funny because a stable Pakistan is in their interest. But some of our other “Middle Eastern brothers” especially Saudi Arabia, will silently support this subversion of Pakistan now no longer expecting much from us.  They are very angry at us for not supporting their Yemen misadventure and helping them kill over 20,000 Yemeni women cholden and civilians. They are also extremely upset that we didn’t join their mad sectarian war against Iran sponsored by the Trumpeter from the USA, despite the very secretive command of a phantom anti terror coslition headed by an extremely uncomfortable Raheel Sharif. And lastly not siding with them against their Qatari misfire.

Saudi Arabia has now openly allied itself to the USA, India, Israel, UAE, Egypt, Regional bloc in direct opposition to the Chinese, Russian, Pakistani and Iranian bloc.

So major geo political realignments driven by selfish national Interests, which must always reign supreme, have changed our relationship with Saudi Arabia.

The same goes for the UAE, which is now also very closely allied to Israel. UAE faces significant economic challenges and competition from CPEC and Gawader and now Qatar. So I don’t see them shedding any tears to see a weak and on its knees, Pakistan.

These anti Pakistan external forces will also support the PMLN  in creating major chaos within to serve their own interests and not out of any love lost for Nawaz.

Nawaz has clearly announced an “undeclared” all out war against the Army, with his recently acquired “Nazriaathee” dogma. He hopes to goad and force the Army into some kind of action. But one sincerely hopes that the Army does not fall into this trap.

But one does hope and pray they also provide full support to the Supreme Court and investigators in doing their jobs. This is a sad reality.  But in a Nation of Mafia Dons, with an ex PM your biggest, this support is critical.

Today only Imran, the Supreme Court, and the Army are the three internal saving graces. China being the one major external one.

In my opinion, an ideal scenario given the current environment and without any extra constitutional steps would constitute the following outcomes.

1. NAB references against Nawaz and family to be filed ASAP.
2. Irfan Mangi as DG to head investigation
3. Quick trial and conviction of Nawaz and family. Jail.  Seizure of assets and lifetime disqualification. The evidence is all there. And conviction and lifetime disqualification for others, especially Ishaq Dar.
4. NAB reference against PM Abbasi for LNG. Trial, lifetime disqualification, conviction and Jail.
5. Shahbaz Sharif and Rana Sanaullah Model Town trial followed by Conviction.  Disqualification and jail.
6. Zaradari NAB references. Trial. Disqualification, Conviction and Jail. Same for Faryal Talpur.
7. Census based demarcation and remarcation of election constituencies.
8. Changes of heads of NAB, FBR, FIA, State Bank, SECP.
9. New constituted Election Commission comprising competent and honest professionals without biases.
10. Trial and conviction of Zafar Hijazi of SECP and Saeed Ahmed of NBP with extremely harsh and exemplary punishment to send a message to senior bureaucrats that they can, and will be taken to task if they do the bidding of their political masters by indulging in illegal and criminal acts.

All above through constitutional petitions filed with the Supreme Court.

That’s my ideal scenario. But if wishes were horses, beggars would be kings.

Of course many will target this as an attempt to remove a “legally and democratically” elected PM through a judicial coup.

The answer to this is simple.  If your Prime Minister and family and your Finance Minister and current PM are criminals, crooks, money launderers, irrespective of how they were elected, they must face the due process of law.

And yes this process must go on to catch others as the judicial process gains strength and investigators are able to do their jobs without fear.

Therefore, in my opinion, this is the only way for us progress, positively.

The people of Pakistan have another golden opportunity to cleanse the Augean stables.

We owe it to all our brave sons and daughters, military and civilians who gave the ultimate sacrifice for Pakistan and to our future generations to fix ourselves, once and for all.

We must not lose this opportunity to rid us of the cancer of Nawaz and Zaradari and all they represent and everything that’s corrupt in any institution, civilian or military.

Let’s not forget that Our Flag flutters not because of the breeze, but the dying breaths of its brave men and women who died, defending it.

-Haider Mehdi

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NASEEM ASHRAF & IQBAL ASHRAF & MUSADAK MALIK: THE CROOK BROTHERS: New NBP Chief Rewarded for Sanctioning Rs. 500 Million to Sharifs’ Brothers Sugar Mill in 1990s

 

BROTHERS MASTER CROOKS & DESTROYERS OF PAKISTAN VIA CORRUPTION:

NASEEM ASHRAF & IQBAL ASHRAF 

with

Dirty Fingers in the Cookie Jar of Every Government

New-NBP-chief-rewarded-for-sanctioning-Rs500m-to-the-Sharifs'-sugar-mill-in-1990s-salman-shahbaz-sharif-ahmed-iqbal-ashraf

By Sarmad Ali

Islamabad, Jan 28 (Pak Destiny) The Nawaz Sharif government has rewarded Syed Ahmad Iqbal Ashraf by appointing him president of National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) for his services – sanctioning Rs500 million loan to the Ramzan Sugar Mill of the Sharifs in 1990s.
“Ahsraf has also been given a task to settle down Rs3billion loan of Itifaq Foundry which it had taken from the NBP in the 1990s,” the sources said.
The sources said Ashraf was the regional director of NBP when he had sanctioned Rs500 million to the Sharif’s Ramzan Sugar Mill when they needed money. Salman Shahbaz had asked his uncle to appoint Ashraf.
A chartered accountant by profession, Ahmad Iqbal is a brother of Dr Nasim Ashraf, the former minister for National Commission for Human Development (NCHD) and president of Pakistan Cricket Board in General Musharraf’s government. Nasim Ashraf brought in Musadak Malik, a big time crook, whose connections with a  super power are highly suspicious. After Nasim Ashraf and Iqbal Ashraf absconded from Pakistan, they left their master-mind Musadak Malik to be an Advisor to Nawaz Sharif. This unemployed US Pharmacist, still a US Citizen has a gift of gab and can through use of this gift he wiggled his way  into Nawaz Sharif’s Cabinet as an his Advisor.
He replaced Dr Asif Brohi who had three years to reach the retirement age.
A total of 51 candidates had applied for the post. The selection was originally to be made by a high-powered commission comprising Federal Tax Ombudsman and two academicians from Agha Khan University and Lahore University of Management Sciences. – Pak Destiny

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Well done Mazhar Iqbal vs Danyal Aziz

Mazhar Iqbal a senior journalist of Islamabad forced Danyal Aziz to apologise from journalists for saying “the way Imran Khan is getting media coverage, he seems to be Jawai (brother-in-law, said as an insult) of journalists.

 
Mazhar Iqbal stood before Danyal Aziz during his press conference at PID Islamabad and asked him to apologise from journalists while during this course of arguments mediamen present there raised shame, shame slogans in presence of Danyal Aziz.
 
“I apologize from all of you, if my words have hurt you and I am writing to apologize in writing too”, said Danyal Aziz.
 
Well done Mazhar Iqbal, you have upheld the image of media and journalists.

J Choudhry

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The roar of the paper tigers by Ayaz Amir

The roar of the paper tigers…

Ayaz Amir

Pakistan’s fearsome paper tigers are caught in two traps: Dawn leaks and the Panama Papers. Unable to get out of them they seem to have decided that attack is the best form of defence. Pursuant to this conclusion the jungle of Pakistani politics is ringing with the sound of their deafening roars.

The papers tigers have also put on special spectacles which produce the miraculous effect of making the jalsas of their opponents—principally Imran Khan—look to them like ‘jalsies’ and their own relatively modest shows of force held within shamianas look like mighty jalsas. 

The chief lion, Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, has been at a loss to come up with the right answers to the Dawn leaks. He was first compelled to make a sacrificial offering of one of his favourites, former information minister Pervaiz Rashid, who remains close to the prime minister but, alas, is no more in the cabinet. Sooner or later Pakistani information ministers fall in love with their voices and for Pervaiz Rashid to be deprived of the heady pleasure of seeing himself constantly on television is no doubt a heavy loss to bear. Still, the iron law of necessity prevails over other considerations. 

My friend Tariq Fatemi was the very model of loyalty, indeed loyal above and beyond the call of duty. But because of the Dawn affair he too has been cast to the winds. He is protesting his innocence—this in his farewell letter to the Foreign Office—but what good does this do him now?

Rao Tehsin, the former Principal Information Officer, has also been made a scapegoat for no better reason than that he is easily dispensable, although most people in the news business are aware that he had nothing to do with the Dawn leak.

This is turning into something like Watergate, lesser fry like Haldeman, Ehrlichman, Dean and a host of others sacrificed but President Nixon denying all culpability. The Furies eventually caught up with him but many lives were ruined. 
Even as they roar the paper tigers are playing the same game. They want the nation to believe they are real lions and not of the circus variety but such is their moral courage that instead of taking the blame for this fiasco on their own shoulders they have put others—like the hapless Fatemi and Tehsin—in the firing line.

There is a reason for this course of action: the Princess Royal, reputedly the chosen heir to the Heavy Mandate, must be protected at all costs. Remember Memogate? It was pure fiction, a concoction which had nothing to do with national security. It was just an attempt to cut the Zardari government down to size. Dawn Leaks by contrast is all too real. At the height of the anti-Indian agitation in Occupied Kashmir it spoke India’s language and in so many words held the Pakistan army responsible for ‘jihadi’ policies and the country’s consequent ‘diplomatic isolation’. Self-incrimination and tarring the army with the brush of cross-border terrorism cannot go further than this.

At the time of Memogate Nawaz Sharif arrived at the Supreme Court in a black coat to read his indictment against the PPP government. As the Dawn leak saga unfolds what colour of coat would he like to put on now?

How did the Princess Royal get off the hook? The story going the rounds of course is that this concession, made right at the beginning when this affair exploded, came from him who reportedly wanted to be made field marshal. Someone does you a favour, in this case sparing the Princess Royal, and you return the favour by spreading stories of his field marshal ambitions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All the same, Dawn Leaks and the Panama Papers are taking their toll. The more the paper tigers feel squeezed the more they roar. The chief lion calls his opponents a hundred jackals although if we look at the moral courage on display in both the Dawn leaks and the Panama Papers it becomes a bit difficult to make out who the lions are and who the jackals.

And what should we make of the Princess Royal losing her cool and attacking journalists, going so far as to imply that those associated with the outing of the leaks, like the journalist Umar Cheema, were guilty of conspiring against Pakistan. This is interesting, for it amounts to saying that the Sharifs and Pakistan are one, and that attacking the one is to attack the other. Louis Fourteenth said he was the state. Madam Maryam Safdar is saying the same thing. Iqbal and Jinnah, turn over in your graves.

But the screws are tightening. If the first action of the three-member Supreme Court constituted to supervise the Panama JIT (Joint Investigation Team) is any indication the Sharifs are in for a long, hot summer. The bench rejected the names sent for inclusion in the team by the State Bank and the Securities and Exchange Commission and asked for a list of fresh names. The beleaguered first family would not be amused.

One thing we can be sure of: the ISI and Military Intelligence representatives on the JIT will be extra vigilant. Gone are the days when the army and ISI acted as godfathers to the Sharifs and lifted them to power and prominence. In today’s different climate marked by the vast gulf of distrust and misgivings between the two sides, the Sharifs can expect no easy ride from that quarter.

But what are paper tigers up to, what does their roaring signify? From the tone of Nawaz Sharif’s recent speeches, and also from the roaring of smaller stuffed lions like Nisar Ali Khan, it almost seems as if they are trying to provoke a reaction. Not having answers to Dawn Leaks and the Panama Papers are they moved by the thought that it would be best to go down again as political martyrs?

It would be folly to lend them a helping hand in this. Zardari stewed in his juice and that is how the PPP was undone. Had his term been cut short by Memogate he too would have raised the banner of martyrdom. The Sharifs now are stewing in their juice. This is the work of no human agency. Dawn Leaks was no army conspiracy. Panama Papers was no handiwork of the ISI. In the predicament of the Sharifs we can see impersonal forces at work, the faint rustle of the wings of history as the past catches up with the present.

So let the stuffed lions roar. Let their minions roar, although personally I am not a little intrigued that the likes of the ever-amusing Talal Chaudry and Danial Aziz have mostly gone silent. Pakistan is caught in a bigger drama and when things happen on this scale and with such intensity, one misstep following another, it would be very surprising if the various events we are seeing don’t come together and roll to a resounding climax.

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