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Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's younger brother and Punjab chief minister have been summoned by a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) probing the high- profile Panama gate graft case against his family. The JIT summoned Shehbaz Sharif, 65, to record his statement on June 17 and face questioning by the six-member team, sources said. The JIT was set up by the Supreme Court last month to investigate the Sharif family about its properties in London. It had questioned Sharif's sons — Hussain and Hasan — last month over the family's alleged improper business dealings. His eldest son Hussain was questioned five times while Hasan, the younger son, was summoned twice. The court last year took up the case and issued a split decision over allegations of money laundering when Sharif was prime minister in 1990s. The JIT is bound to complete the probe in 60 days unless it is granted additional time.
Prime Minister Sharif has been asked to appear before the JIT tomorrow. It is for the first time that a sitting prime minister would appear before a high-level probe team traditionally constituted to investigate high-profile criminal cases. The JIT alleged that the government was using its official machinery to hamper its investigation. It also identified five government departments, including Ministry of Law, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and the Intelligence Bureau (IB), which were trying to influence the JIT work. The Supreme Court has asked the government to respond to the allegations against the departments.