LAHORE - The Lahore High Court yesterday issued notice to the federal government in a petition challenging Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s medical treatment on public money.

Barrister Sayyed Javed Iqbal Jafree had filed civil miscellaneous application stating that there are no medicines in public hospitals for a common man; the county has been hit by foreign debts but the prime minister has gone abroad for his medical treatment on public money. He said he has gone on private plane on public money.

This is discriminatory while the Constitution does not allow it, he stated. The lawyer-petitioner said unfortunately PM could not establish such hospital where he could go for his own medical treatment. He requested the court to stop PM from spending public money on his treatment.

After hearing initial arguments, Justice Muhammad Khalid Mehmood Khan issued notice to the federal government and others and adjourned further hearing until May 11.

Jafree filed his main petition against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif back in 2014 challenging his visit to New York on private plane along with his family members and personal servant. The petition is still lying pending.

The lawyer had claimed that public money was used by the PM and his family on lavish foreign tours. He had alleged that the PM stayed at a hotel that cost Rs800,000 a night during his visit to New York. He had also said that all expenses were paid from public money. He had contended that rulers could not use the national exchequer to enjoy a luxurious lifestyle.

The petitioner had prayed to the court to place the prime minister and his family members on Exit Control List (ECL) to restrain them from making foreign tours using public money.