Former Pak Prez Pervez Musharraf sentenced to death for ‘high treason’

General Pervez Musharaff

The Special Court in Islamabad, on Tuesday convicted former Pakistani autocrat General Pervez Musharraf for high treason and sentenced him to death.

This case pertains to the one registered in 2013 by the Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz (PML-N) government led by Nawaz Sharif against the General for clamping down a state of Emergency on November 3, 2007. Subsequently, he was charged with the offence of high treason and indicted on March 31st, 2014.

On a subsequent appeal, he was allowed to travel abroad in 2016. There were many delays and the Supreme Court of Pakistan had lashed out at the government and then had formed a special court to try this case.

The bench that heard the case included three members, comprising the Chief Justice of the Peshawar High Court Waqar Seth, Justice Nazar Akbar of the Sindh High Court and Justice Shahid Karim of the Lahore High Court. Two out of the three judges were in favour of capital Punishment. A detailed judgement is expected to be issued in 38 hours.

Also Read: UN Commission lashes out at Pakistan, says ‘religious freedom under threat’

The prosecution team led by Advocate Ali Zia Bajwa had sought to include Former Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz, Abdul Hamid Dogar and Zamid Hamid. He had argued,” It is imperative for all accused to be tried simultaneously. The aides and abettors should be tried as well.”

Quoting the Supreme Court judgment, the bench rejected the claims and gave them two weeks time to file a fresh charge sheet in this regard.

The court also rejected the plea put forth by Musharraf’s counsel Raza Bashir, to provide his client 15-20 days to record his statement under Section 342 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CRPC). This plea was rejected by the Court and it was pointed out that many opportunities had been provided in the past, and yet the defendant didn’t appear before it.

It had been earlier reported that Musharraf who is living in exile in Dubai had been admitted at the Dubai American hospital and had to undergo an “emergency surgery”.

General Pervez Musharraf over threw the democratically elected government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in 1999 and then ruled till 2008. He is also accused of starting the Kargil war and is considered to be the main architect of this misadventure, according to military analysts.

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