–IHC issues verdict in review plea regarding treason case, allows Musharraf’s counsel Salman Safdar to become party in case
The Lahore High Court (LHC) has sought the record of the formation of a special court in the Pervez Musharraf treason case by Dec 10.
LHC’s Justice Syed Mazhar Ali Akbar Naqvi questioned government counsel Reza Bashir about the record of Musharraf’s case, to which he responded that he was unable to obtain any records as the case is still pending in Islamabad High Court (IHC).
Musharraf’s counsel contended that the complaint against Musharraf was filed on the directives of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif instead of the federal cabinet. The prosecution team was also constituted on the then PM’s direction.
He further stated that the special court was to be formed with the approval of the cabinet, but it was formed on the directives of the former prime minister.
“How can an act carried out in October 1999 make an act on November 3, 2007 fall under treason,” asked Justice Naqvi. Musharraf’s counsel reiterated that the formation of a special court is illegal.
Justice Naqvi questioned the representatives of the interior ministry about the records. “When will the record be produced before the court?” They responded that the case is still pending in the IHC.
Meanwhile, the IHC released the complete verdict in the high treason case against Musharraf. The 24 page long, extensive verdict given after the IHC bench headed by Chief Justice Athar Minallah had set aside the case till all parties named were heard.
The verdict allows barrister Salman Safdar who is representing Musharraf in the proceedings to become a party in the case. The verdict also binds the federal government to formulate and finalise a prosecution team to pursue the case further.
Musharraf was indicted on March 31, 2014, and the prosecution had tabled the entire evidence before the special court in September the same year.
However, due to litigation at appellate forums, the trial of the former military dictator lingered on and he left Pakistan in March 2016 and has been an absconder ever since.
In September this year, a special court bench had decided to conduct the trial on a daily basis from October 8 to conclude the case.