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A picture of former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam bidding farewell to Begum Kulsoom Nawaz, Mr Sharif's ailing wife, before their return to Pakistan for their imminent arrest, has struck an emotional chord with many in the country.

Earlier in April, Pakistan's Supreme Court disqualified Nawaz from contesting elections for the rest of his life because of his corruption cases as revealed in the Panama Papers.

On July 6, Nawaz was sentenced to 10 years of imprisonment and a fine of eight million pounds was slapped on him in the Avenfield reference case, while Maryam was sentenced to seven years of jail and fined two million pounds by the accountability court.

Nawaz's son-in-law, captain (retired) Safdar was awarded one-year jail term.

Begum Kulsoom Nawaz had been unconscious and in a critical condition after she suffered a cardiac arrest last month.

The caretakers want to suspend the mobile phone service in five areas that include Lahore airport, walled city area, Shahdara, Nawab Town and Burki Hadyara. Containers have been placed on the roads.

Pakistan's media regulator has ordered television channels to stop live telecast of briefings of political leaders containing "defamatory and derogatory content" ahead for former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's return to the country on Friday, NDTV reported.

Recent opinion polls suggest PML-N has lost its lead nationally to the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party of arch-rival Khan, whose anti-corruption message has resonated with many Pakistanis. A second stint in power was ended by a military coup in 1999, prompting a period in jail for Sharif and years in exile in London.

"But I'm returning to Pakistan leaving my sick wife behind", he vowed.

It is expected that Nawaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz will be arrested upon their arrival.

The military, which has ruled Pakistan for about half its history since 1947, has denied interfering in modern-day politics. It is time to end the war that has been going on for 70 years. He was ousted from his third term as prime minister by the Supreme Court of Pakistan previous year following a corruption investigation and banned from politics for life but remains a powerful symbol for his ruling party.

Calling PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif a conman, the PTI chief had said that anyone with a living conscience would not vote for PML-N.

Khan has also denied colluding with the military.


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