Musharraf Again Fails to Appear in Court

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ISLAMABAD, Feb 7 – A special court in Pakistan constituted to try former president Pervez Musharraf for high treason resumed its hearing Friday but Musharraf again failed to appear before it.

On Feb 4, sources close to Musharraf said the former president would appear before the court Feb 7 in the high treason trial for imposing Emergency and subverting the constitution in 2007, but he did not appear before it Friday.

The three-judge panel headed by Justice Faisal Arab of the Sindh High Court started the proceedings, the Dawn online reported.

During the proceedings, Musharraf’s lawyers requested the court not to issue directives before pronouncing any decision on the former army chief’s plea for exemption from personal appearance and other miscellaneous petitions.

His lawyers said petitions were pending in relation to the court’s jurisdiction and the judges of the special court, and added that a decision should also be reached on whether Musharraf’s trial could be moved to a military court.

Sources in his defence team earlier said that Musharraf has challenged the jurisdiction of the special court and, therefore, it was not appropriate for him to face the trial unless the issue of thecourt’s jurisdiction was decided.

Musharraf has been in the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology in Rawalpindi since Jan 2 when he complained of a heart problem while being driven to the court.

On Jan 31, a three-judge bench of the court issued an arrest warrant for the former army chief in the treason case as he repeatedly failed to appear before it.

The court also rejected his application for medical treatment abroad, and observed Musharraf’s medical report did not state anywhere that he was unable to appear before it.

Musharraf has been charged with abrogating, subverting, suspending, holding in abeyance, and attempting to conspire against the 1973 Constitution by declaring Emergency and detaining judges of the superior courts. — IANS

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Clarion India - News, Views and Insights about Indian Muslims, Dalits, Minorities, Women and Other Marginalised and Dispossessed Communities.

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