ISLAMABAD: Amid speculations whether the “subjective video” of judge Arshad Malik was original or tempered, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz Vice President Maryam Nawaz Sharif disclosed before the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) team that the video was “original” and neither edited nor tempered or doctored in any way.
Maryam Nawaz, in her written response dispatched to the FIA investigation team, made many shocking revelations about the “subjective video” i.e. how, when, why and where was it (video) filmed, recorded, and protected.
“The video as presented was not edited — rather the video played on one side of the screen, while the Urdu transcript ran on the other half of the screen — Nasir Butt told me that there was a video [as well as] audio and these were recorded simultaneously on two separate devices. He [Butt] also told me that the device in which the video-cum-audio was recorded was in the pocket of the person accompanying Nasir Butt, however, that other person’s name and particulars are not known,” Maryam told FIA.
She responded to 41 questions from the FIA team investigating the matter of judge Arshad Malik, who lodged a complaint against her and a few other leaders of PML-N.
Investigators further asked her when she [Maryam] came to know for the first time that the judge’s movie had been recorded. “Nasir Butt told me the day Nawaz Sharif was returning to prison and expressed interest to meet with me in two days. Thereafter, he met with me at my residence at Jati Umra, Raiwind, Lahore and showed me the video that was played during the presser. On 10th May, 2019, he delivered, to my residence, a mobile phone (devoid of a sim card) that contained the said copy of the video,” Maryam replied.
When asked what the purpose of filming the video was, the PML-N leader said, “As per Nasir Butt, the purpose was to record the facts and circumstances forming the basis for the conviction and sentencing of MNS, as known to and disclosed by judge Arshad Malik.”
When the FIA team asked her the purpose of her press conference on 6th July, 2019, the PML-N leader responded that “the purpose of the presser was to bring to notice the gross injustice that had been perpetrated in rendering the judgment against Nawaz Sharif in Al-Azizia Reference No.19/2017.”
“I firmly believe that access to justice in fundamental rights guaranteed to all the citizens of Pakistan and that denial of justice to any citizen is tantamount to denial of his / her right to life, liberty, dignity, fair trial and equality. All of which are fundamental rights guaranteed by the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, 1973.”
Maryam also admitted that Nasir Butt was a loyal worker of the party who recorded the meetings with judge Arshad Malik. “Nasir Butt is (Senior Vice President PML-N) United Kingdom Since 2010. I (Maryam) have known Nasir Butt for a number of years in his capacity as an ardent supporter and office holder of the PML-N in UK. However, his interactions have remained limited with the PML-N only and not with myself in person,” she responded.
She further told the FIA team that she never directed Nasir Butt to record his meetings with judge Arshad Malik. When asked where the “subjective video” was recorded, Maryam responded, “As per Nasir Butt, a small portion was recorded outdoors, and the rest in the judge’s house.”
When asked who ordered Nasir Butt to record it, the PML-N leader said, “As per Nasir Butt, he recorded it of his own accord — as per Nasir Butt, he planned it himself.”
The FIA team questioned Maryam Nawaz in whose custody the original audio recording was now, and she responded, “As far as I know, the custody of the original recording is with Nasir Butt.”
She further explained that “the original device containing video is not with me [Maryam].”
When asked where Nasir Butt handed over the said video to her, Maryam said, “Nasir Butt delivered a SIM less mobile phone containing a copy of the video played during the presser to my residence at Jati Umra, Raiwind, Lahore. Nasir Butt delivered a copy of the video played during the presser on 10th May 2019 in a SIM less mobile phone.”
The FIA asked Maryam whether Nasir Butt provided the original device which contained the video used for the recording of the meeting, and she responded, “I do not have a personal knowledge as to which device was used for audio recording of the meeting. I am not in possession of the original device containing video used for recording.”
When asked which device was used for audio recording of the meeting and to provide the original device containing the audio used for recording, the PML-N leader said, “I do not have a personal knowledge as to which device was used for audio recording of the meeting. I am not in possession of the original device containing audio used for recording.”
About the computer and laptop used for the video, Maryam said, “The computer/laptop on which the video was run was brought by the gentleman sent by Nasir Butt on the day of the presentation. However, the said gentleman had taken back the said computer/laptop after the presser, hence I don’t have the said computer/laptop with me.”
The FIA team, in its another question pertaining to Maryam’s claim regarding the institutions blackmailing the judges for a decision, asked which institutions and people she was was talking about.
“The institutions are indicated by the contents of the recording themselves. I do not have to spell them out for you [FIA],” she responded.
About the objectionable video of judge Arshad Malik, Maryam Nawaz said she did not obtain the said video. “I neither obtained nor have any objectionable video of Arshad Malik. No one has provided me any “Objectionable Video” of judge Arshad Malik. I have not seen any objectionable video of Arshad Malik.”
Who informed her that judge Arshad Malik had any objectionable video, the FIA further asked her.
“It is mentioned by judge Arshad Malik himself in the video-cum-audio and audio recording provided by Nasir Butt,” she replied.
When asked how she knew that judge Arshad Malik was blackmailed through the objectionable video, the PML-N leader responded, “This is evident from the contents of the video-cum-audio and audio recordings themselves provided by Nasir Butt.”
“The video of Arshad Malik shown during the presser was not recorded by me or at my behest; rather it was recorded by Nasir Butt on his own initiative,” she added.
The FIA’s last question was if she had any other videos of Arshad Malik which she talked about in the press conference regarding her allegation that the judge was naming the persons who pressurised him for a decision against Nawaz Sharif.
Maryam Nawaz replied, “These videos are not in my custody.”