LAHORE: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday left for London for a medical treatment which he had been putting off for a while due to official responsibilities.
Prior to his departure, the Premier held a meeting which was attended by senior ministers including Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar, Chief Minister Punjab Shehbaz Sharif and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.
During the meeting he gave special directions to the chief secretary and principal secretary, sources said.
During his absence state affairs will be taken care of by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.
Dar on Tuesday canceled his visit to Washington for attending annual meeting of Breton Wood Institutions (BWIs) such as the IMF and World Bank. The decision was taken on direction of the prime minister to look after important matters of state in the absence of Nawaz Sharif in the country.
“The PM had already canceled his due medical checkup twice so he would be proceeding to the UK for his routine medical checkup. In this context, the government decided to cancel his visit to US for attending annual meeting of the IMF/World Bank,” Federal Minister for Finance Ishaq Dar told The News on phone from Lahore.
The minister said that he would not be visiting UK along with the premier but he would be staying in the country to look after important matters in his absence.
Well-placed sources told The News here on Monday evening that PM Nawaz was unwell and had initial medical check-up in Lahore on Monday where he had been advised to proceed to London for his detailed medical check-up, which was due for a number of months but he had been putting it off due to his hectic official engagements.
Prime Minster Nawaz developed minor irregularity in his cardiac functions and for that he got treatment from a London hospital in 2011 well before becoming the prime minister in this stint. He had to undergo a simple procedure but incidentally it got complicated due to negligence of his interventionist cardiologist.
Later, the situation was brought quickly under control through emergent steps and his health returned to complete normalcy in the following days. Since then, he has been advised by his doctors to undergo regular check-up twice a year or at least once in a year.
The sources said that Prime Minister Nawaz will be returning Islamabad early next week after a thorough check-up.
To a query, sources made it clear that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was going to London due to health reasons and it was nothing to do with the politics or any other development. The kite-flyers must desist from making speculations about it, the sources advised.