Pakistan's former prime minister Nawaz Sharif's mother Begum Shamim Akhtar died in London on Sunday. She was 91. Begum Akhtar was not well for the last one month or so, according to the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party sources.
"On Sunday she breathed her last in London," PML-N deputy secretary-general Attaullah Tarar said. She had travelled to London in February last and had been living with Nawaz and her grandchildren. Tarar said the body of Begum Akhtar is likely to be brought back to Lahore on Monday and buried next to the grave of her husband Mian Sharif at the Jati Umra Raiwind residence of the Sharif family. Tarar said an application is being filed with the authorities concerned for the release of Nawaz's younger brother and PML-N President Shahbaz Sharif on parole to attend the last rites of his mother.
PML-N supreme leader Nawaz Sharif, who has been declared absconder' by a Pakistani court, is unlikely to return to the country to attend the last rites of his mother. "Nawaz would attend funeral prayers of his mother in London before the body is taken to Lahore, a senior PML-N leader told PTI. He said that Nawaz is undergoing treatment related to small stones in his kidney at the moment. He will return to the country once he gets fully well, he said. Nawaz had left for London in November 2019 after the Lahore High Court granted him a four-week permission to go abroad for treatment. He had submitted an undertaking to the court to return to Pakistan citing his record of facing the law and justice within four weeks or as soon as he is declared healthy and fit to travel by doctors.
He was also given bail in the Al-Azizia Mills corruption case in which he was serving a seven-year prison sentence in Lahore's Kot Lakhpat Jail. Pakistan Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa, Prime Minister Imran Khan, Pakistan People's Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto and other politicians expressed their condolence on the demise of Nawaz's mother. Gen Bajwa "expresses grief and heartfelt condolences on sad demise of Begum Shamim Akhtar mother of Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif/Mian Shehbaz Sharif," the Director General of ISPR (Inter-Services Public Relations) – the media wing of the army – said in a tweet.