Trial in army court: Musharraf’s counsel appeals to ex-servicemen

Published: January 12, 2014
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Former president Pervez Musharraf. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

Former president Pervez Musharraf. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

LAHORE: 

Defence counsel Dr Khalid Ranjha appealed to ex-servicemen on Saturday to request the military to issue a statement that General Pervez Musharraf be tried under the Army Act and not by the special court.

Former servicemen gathered in Lahore under the platform of ‘Pakistan First Forum’. The objective the meeting was to not only urge the government also to try Musharraf in the army court but also appeal to the sitting generals and lower cadre to stand up in favour of Musharraf.

Dr Ranjha apprised the forum about the latest situation of the high-treason case and appealed to them to mount pressure on their army colleagues to support the former general and “maintain the dignity of the army as an institution”.

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If the army wanted, Musharraf’s trial could be transferred from the special court to the army court within 24 hours, the counsel said.

“We don’t want Musharraf to be pardoned under the act but we want him to be tried under the same case under Article 6,” he explained.

The reason is that Musharraf’s legal team cast doubts on the special court’s ability to deliver justice.

Dr Ranjha said the Special Court Act 1976 formed a special court National Awami Party’s Abdul Wali Khan and the trial showed how the court was biased towards then prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.

He reiterated that the federal government, including the Prime Minister and federal ministers, who are plaintiffs of the case are biased against Musharraf. Moreover, former chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry who picked the special court judges also has a personal grudge against him.

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Addressing the forum, former ISI Punjab commander Brigadier (retd) Ejaz said that the gathering would declare to the PML-N led government and to other quarters that Musharraf’s case is based on personal vendetta. He said that objective of the gathering is to sensitise the concerned that justice is and will not be delivered to Musharraf.

Musharraf was originally supposed to address the forum himself, but called the plans off following the advice of his doctors, his lawyer Ahmed Raza Kasuri said.

However, according to his spokesperson and former colleague Rashid Qureshi, the speech had been recorded earlier and was called off on the instructions of the former president himself.

Sources said he decided against addressing the ex-servicemen after consultations with his lawyers and certain quarters in the military.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 12th, 2014.

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Reader Comments (6)

  • immortal_soloist
    Jan 12, 2014 - 1:24PM

    Long live the brave and honest leader Pervez Musharraf.

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  • Jan 12, 2014 - 7:41PM

    Army must maintain respect and honour of its soldiers after retirement. Army must announce Army Court for trial of ex COAS General Musharraf and must direct Supreme Court to stop proceeding of High Treason against the Supreme Fighter of Pakistan Army. If the present COAS General Raheel does not protect a General, then who will protect ordinary soldiers. It is the duty of COAS as per MPML to ensure rehabilitation, payment of pension, medical facilities and to call reservists for war till death of the soldier. If present COAS fails to do so, then he is not COAS of Pakistan Army. I, as a retired Army Soldier, believe that General Raheel will humiliate retired soldiers, families of Shaheeds and will cause BEIZTI of Army if he does not respond in the case of General Musharraf.

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  • Khann
    Jan 12, 2014 - 8:00PM

    IF he is brave then he should appear in the court and prove himself ….

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  • AnisAqeel
    Jan 12, 2014 - 11:04PM

    Isn’t it a treasonous act by itself to invite indulgences of our military to save an alleged treasonous crime!!! Javed Hashmi was arrested and punished by the same kind of crime. Now is the time to clean ourselves from these excuses and our military should take action on such campaigns that is further damaging our revered institution and advise the defense ministry with their recommendations for action.

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  • Imran Ahmed
    Jan 13, 2014 - 2:23AM

    I would be in favour of abolishing special privileges for the military or any other elite group such as having their own separate courts or medical services or housing schemes etcetera. All citizens should be subject to the same justice system, there is very little to justify military courts in peacetime.

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  • Pakistani Patriot
    Jan 13, 2014 - 11:17PM

    @Imran Ahmed:
    I must enlighten you that military in every country has its own courts. The reason is you don’t want soldiers and officers dragged in civilian courts where any one can lodge a complaint and then the soldier will have to leave his duty and get mired in lawsuits. Imagine what would happen if victims of war in Wazirstan started suing the Army and judges were authorized to call them to court. Would not be good for the Army and the country. Think about it before posting your comments.Recommend

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