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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Monday summoned a meeting of the National Security Council (NSC), the highest forum for discussion on security issues, on audio leaks of the Prime Minister’s House to be held on Wednesday.

Sources said that the meeting will be attended by all the three services chiefs, federal ministers and committee members. Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB) chiefs will also attend the meeting, they said.

They said that the authorities will be briefed on security issues including the audio leaks of the Prime Minister’s House.

Meanwhile, the government has decided to forma Joint Investigation Team (JIT) to probe the audio leaks from the Prime Minister’s House, sources said.

They said that the JIT will include representatives of secret agencies to investigate the audio recordings of alleged conversations between key government figures including Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Nawaz, and some members of the federal cabinet.

Sources said that the JIT will probe whether the data has been hacked or stolen. The investigation team will also probe whether Prime Minister’s House was bugged, or it is mobile recording, they said. They said that the team will be authorised to include the staff of the Prime Minister’s House in the investigation. It will also probe, which officers were present in the Prime Minister’s House at the time of the recording, they said.

Leaked audio clips purportedly reveal PM Shehbaz's conversations with aides, officials

The leaked audiotapes allegedly feature Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, and PM’s other close aides including some members of his cabinet, wherein, they can be allegedly heard making plans to politically dent Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

In other audio clip, Maryam can be allegedly heard criticising Finance Minister Miftah Ismail over hike in electricity and fuel prices and his other economic policies. Maryam can also be heard allegedly supporting the return of Ishaq Dar from the United Kingdom to Pakistan to manage the latter’s economic affairs.

In yet another such tape, four federal ministers - Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Law Minister Azam Tarar, and Economic Affairs Minister Ayaz Sadiq - can allegedly be heard making “plans” to get the resignations of the PTI lawmakers accepted (by speaker National Assembly). The interior minister can allegedly be heard informing his colleagues that he would get the resignations of seven to eight PTI lawmakers accepted after getting approval from “Mian Sahib” – an obvious reference to Nawaz Sharif.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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