Nawaz Sharif Quits and Proves What We Always Believed

You would be forgiven for believing that Pakistan politics is scripted.

The only certainty in life is: Fight highly polarized elections to become Prime Minister of Pakistan, get your tenure cut short within 4 years, and then get sent to jail or run off to find asylum in London.

Image Courtesy: Dawn

Successive Prime Ministers in Pakistan have found themselves in this situation, and Nawaz Sharif is no different.

On this day, let’s look at some important events in Nawaz Sharif’s life:

1977 – Opens Ittefaq Industries, a family business dealing in steel, sugar and textile industries.

1985 – Becomes chief minister of Punjab province.

October 1990 – Gets elected as Pakistan’s prime minister.

April 18, 1993 – Sharif’s government is dismissed by President Ghulam Ishaq Khan after charges of corruption and mismanagement are raised.

May 26, 1993 – Pakistan’s Supreme Court orders the reinstatement of Sharif, declaring his dismissal unconstitutional and the charges false. Sharif and Khan both later resign.

February 3, 1997 – Is re-elected as prime minister.

October 12, 1999 – Army General Pervez Musharraf overthrows Sharif in a bloodless coup.

January 2000 – Sharif goes on trial for charges of hijacking/terrorism and conspiracy to commit murder.

April 6, 2000 – Is convicted of plane hijacking/terrorism and sentenced to life imprisonment. He is charged with hijacking because he attempted to prevent a plane Musharraf was flying in from landing at any airport in Pakistan, when the plane was low on fuel. Sharif knew of Musharraf’s coup intentions.

July 22, 2000 – Is convicted of corruption and sentenced to an additional 14-years imprisonment while already serving a life sentence. His failure to declare assets and pay taxes led to the conviction.

December 2000 – Is released from prison by a deal brokered by the Saudi royal family.

August 23, 2007 – Pakistan’s Supreme court lifts the exile imposed on Sharif. He served only seven of his 10-year exile.

April 19, 2010 – Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari voluntarily signs the 18th Amendment to the constitution, significantly diminishing his powers. Among other serious changes is a measure removing the two term limit for prime ministers, allowing Sharif to vie for a third term.

June 5, 2013 – Is elected prime minister of Pakistan.

July 28, 2017 – Supreme Court orders him to resign from his post.

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