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Thursday, 23 March, 2000, 14:14 GMT
Is it right to censor Nawaz Sharif?
The trial of ousted Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, has become embroiled in a row between defence lawyers and the prosecution over reporting restrictions imposed on Mr Sharif's testimony.
Or is there a danger Mr Sharif may make statements which could endanger Pakistan's security as the prosecution allege?
I am not at all proud of the deposed PM, for whom my family voted. A leader is tested when he is under trying conditions. Mr Sharif complained of the lack of mineral water in the jail, whereas he should have spoken of something befitting of twice a ruler of Pakistan.
I think it is highly advisable to censor his rhetoric, which is likely to be damaging to the national security of the country. Instead of owning up the illegal order he gave, he is most likely to exaggerate the "strategic differences" he might have with the Army Chief. And above all there is no question of discussion here, it is for the Pakistanis to make and implement their laws. Outsiders should mind their own business.
Mukhtar Ali, Pakistan
Anyone noticed how the Indians will automatically jump on the bandwagon when it is something against Pakistan as a nation, they are all supporting Sharif now! Funny but True!
Nawaz Sharif's statements should definitely be censored; his words may carry much more than should be revealed to the world and are different from those of the prosecution witnesses, who were just simple officials in the police and the airports. Of course, he should be allowed to say anything in-camera, but the court should decide which parts should be kept from disclosure to the public.
I think he should speak out¿rather be allowed to speak. Then only all the dirty linen of Musharraf & Co will be known to the public at large
I think this is the real test of their (Sharif's counsels) professionalism. They should keep on defending their client no matter what apprehensions they have in their minds. I know it's a long debate and there is no end to it, but still I want to ask these people who are living in the ideal world that what system are they advocating? Why do we always go for short cuts? How do systems evolve?
I think the guy should be given a chance
to speak his mind. Overall the trial has been
just and fair and proves beyond doubt
how Nawaz Sharif, single-handedly tried to
destroy every Pakistani institution and assume the role
of a One Man rule. He will go down in history as one of the
most corrupt people Pakistan has ever known.
The question is not that whether he is guilty
or not. It is whether a person who is being
tried in court of law be given the chance
of speaking for himself. How can the common
person decide whether Nawaz Sharif is
wrong or not if he does not listen to
both sides of story.
Nobody is going to believe Mr Nawaz Sharif. He was and he is a danger to National security of Pakistan. Pakistani don't believe him because when he was in power, he behaved like King and thought Pakistan was his Kingdom. Now, when he is jail, he is talking about democracy. I believe he should be punished without any wastage of time
It is not fair to censor Nawaz Sharief.
What chance does a person have of getting a fair trial if he's not provided a transparent, accountable forum? Mr. Sharif's life itself might be at risk here. He might as well write his own death sentence if the public and the world at large is not allowed to hear what he has to say.
It is very clear to me that, being the PM of Pakistan before Oct 12, it was within Sharif's power to dismiss the army chief. So the question is, did Sharif tried to divert the plane with the intent of harming the passengers? I'm not sure how Sharif's defence to this charge could include any thing that will endanger Pakistan's national security!!
Nawaz Sharif a "Naughty Boy" Who treated institutions of the country like toys and destroyed them for his pleasure. So he should be treated like a "Naughty Boy" hands tied mouth taped to save others from his mischief.
Yes I think the state has every right to
safeguard its national interests but that doesn't mean
Mr Sharif should not be allowed to make his view point clear.
Every time a Prime Minister is sworn in, He takes a vow of secrecy, and can be charged for breaking that. Understanding this, Nawaz Sharif will never say something stupid. Censoring him will only prove that prosecution is trying to hide something.
PM Nawaz Sharif has the right to represent himself or through a lawyer. If he does not have a lawyer to represent him then one should be appointed for him by the court. I guess one is innocent unless proven guilty.
It's obvious that Nawaz Sharif has been checkmated by Musharaff. If President Clinton is serious about bringing peace to the sub-continent, he should end the 50-year-old war between the political and military establishments in Pakistan.
Nawaz Sharif and Benazir's so called elected and democratic governments in Pakistan were a democracy defined as a government, BY THE PEOPLE, FOR THE PEOPLE and OF THE PEOPLE. He still must be allowed to say anything relevant to this case but all his bluffs to gain sympathies of the mostly uneducated masses must be censored.
Yes, Nawaz Sharif's statements to the media must be filtered because there is a possibility of him revealing state secrets.
However, In Camera he must be allowed to say anything necessary to defend himself, this is how Court will hear arguments from both sides to make the trial impartial.
I think the case against Sharif has been
proved beyond doubt, therefore his statement
will not make any difference. The people of Pakistan
are smart enough to see through his lies.
Firstly the PM with full mandate is adjust the constitution and then he is applauded after he refurbish the Judicial System of the Country and suddenly he was stopped between his modification of the National Defence structure.......
Nawaz Sharif does not deserve any sympathy or justice at all. He destroyed or tried to destroy the judiciary. Never in the history of Pakistan or for that matter in any civilised time, did any one physically send his hooligans to occupy the Supreme Court Building, excited and incited by him during his so called Democratically elected Prime Ministership.
He was one of the worst dictators Pakistan has ever had. An elected dictator. At each stop he would mention his heavy mandate he received from the people. The rest is history.
Any information that can put the security of Pakistan in danger should be censored. Pakistan has a right to guard her national interests. However Mr. Sharif should be given a fair chance to relay his side of the story. The actions taken by Mr. Sharif's defending team seems a very irresponsible decision. They should defend him while obeying the rules and laws of Pakistan. They should understand the sensitivity of the job on hand. We all hope that in the end justice will prevail.
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