Renowned media law firm Carter Ruck has sued British newspaper The Mail on Sunday, online news site Mail Online and its journalist David Rose on behalf of former Punjab chief minister (CM) Shehbaz Sharif for publishing a “politically motivated” article.
The story, published on July 14, 2019, had suggested that Shehbaz and his family “stole British taxpayers’ money” given to Earthquake Relief and Reconstruction Authority (ERRA) set up to help the victims of the 2005 Pakistan earthquake.
“Our response to the question asked in the headline was robust and clear. It was carried close to the bottom of the 2,500-word story,” United Kingdom (UK) Aid had said in its clarification.
“The UK’s financial support to ERRA over this period was for payment by results – which means we only gave money once the agreed work, which was primarily focused on building schools, was completed, and the work audited and verified,” a Department for International Development spokesperson had said.
According to The News, Carter Ruck has agreed to act on behalf of Shebhaz after reviewing the case for a week. Alasdair Pepper, Antonia Foster and Victoria Anderson will represent the leader of opposition in the National Assembly and former Punjab chief minister in his legal claim against the publication.
“Stealing from earthquake victims is like feeding on corpses,” Shehbaz had said while responding to the allegations against him by the British publication.