Viral picture does not show Nawaz Sharif with Humayun Dilawar or Arshad Malik
Picture actually shows Nawaz Sharif with a journalist in London
Claim: A picture shows Nawaz Sharif walking with the judge, Humayun Dilawar. A similar post claims the image depicts Sharif walking with the late judge, Arshad Malik.
Fact: The man walking alongside Nawaz Sharif is journalist Kousar Kazmi, not Dilawar or Malik, the latter of whom has passed away.
On 18 August 2023, Soch Fact Check received a WhatsApp message containing a picture showing two men walking, both sporting glasses, one of them wearing a black jacket and the other — a balding man — a beige one. The duo appear to be strolling in a place that’s not in Pakistan.
The text accompanying the image is reproduced as follows:
“ماشإاللہ پاکستان کے دو عظیم شحصیات ایک ساتھ لندن میں جج دلاور اور نواز شریف ؟؟ ایک فیصلہ سن کے بھاگا ہوا ہے اور دوسرا فیصلہ سنا کے بھاگ گیا
[As God willed, Pakistan’s two great figures — Judge [Humayun] Dilawar and Nawaz Sharif — together in London? One ran away after the [court’s] decision and the other ran away after issuing a [court] ruling.]”
Soch Fact Check also received an Instagram post (archive), which carries the same image; however, it has a different text — “لندن میں جج اور ملزم ایک ساتھ سیر سپاٹا کرتے ہوۓ۔۔ [The judge and the accused having fun together in London.]” — superimposed on it.
The balding man is Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Supremo Nawaz Sharif, who has served as the country’s prime minister thrice.
On 5 August 2023, Additional District and Sessions Judge (ADSJ) Humayun Dilawar of an Islamabad trial court handed Imran Khan — the former prime minister and chief of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) — a three-year jail sentence after finding him guilty in the Toshakhana case.
ADSJ Humayun Dilawar maintained, as per a short order, that Imran Khan hid “the benefits he accrued from the national exchequer wilfully and intentionally” and “cheated while providing information of gifts he obtained from Toshakhana which later proved to be false and inaccurate” during his tenure from 2018 to 2022.
On the other hand, Arshad Malik, an accountability court judge, handed (archive) a seven-year sentence to Sharif in December 2018 in the Al-Azizia reference; however, the former PM was acquitted in the Flagship reference.
The charges were related to two of Sharif’s assets, namely “the Al-Azizia Steel Mills in Saudi Arabia, set up by Sharif’s father in 2001, and Flagship Investments, a company established by his son, Hasan Nawaz, that owns luxury properties in Britain”, according to a Reuters report (archive).
Fact or Fiction?
Using reverse image search tools, Soch Fact Check ascertained that the picture does not show either ADSJ Humayun Dilawar or accountability court judge Arshad Malik.
The man accompanying Sharif in the photo is actually Syed Kousar Kazmi, a UK-based journalist who has served as SAMAA TV’s Bureau Chief for the European Union (EU) and posted the image on his X (formerly Twitter) account (archive) on 3 October 2020.
The image first appeared online in 2020 when Suhaib Saqib, a journalist, activist, and entrepreneur, posted it on social media and accused Kazmi of “being an Indian military officer using my pic taken with @NawazSharifMNS in Hyde Park”, according to an X post (archive) by the former.
Saqib subsequently apologised after Kazmi “took legal action over defamation”.
Moreover, ADSJ Humayun Dilawar travelled to the University of Hull, which is located in Kingston upon Hull and is at least four hours away from London, where Sharif is living.
Conclusion: The man walking alongside Nawaz Sharif is journalist Kousar Kazmi, not Dilawar or Malik, the latter of whom is dead.
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