Lahore: Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf on Friday filed a petition with the Lahore High Court (LHC) challenging the death sentence in a high treason case. The 86 page-long petition was filed by Advocate Azhar Siddique on behalf of Musharraf.
A Islamabad-based special court on December 17 pronounced the death penalty on Pervez Musharraf in the high treason case, reported Dawn news. A full bench hearing in the plea filed by Musharraf is scheduled to take place on January 9, 2020.
Notably, this death penalty was the first of its kind in the entire history of Pakistan, especially for holding a military chief responsible in a high treason case. The plea filed against the death verdict, which had named the federal government and others as respondents, had highlighted that the “judgement contained a mix of anomalies and contradictory statements”, as quoted by news agency IANS. The plea against the death sentence also blamed the special court for wrapping up the trial rapidly.
The petition also challenged the verdict’s graphic paragraph 66. According to news agency IANS, the respective paragraph in the verdict read: “We direct the law enforcement agencies to strive their level best to apprehend the fugitive/convict (Musharraf) and to ensure that the punishment is inflicted as per law and if found dead, his corpse be dragged to the D-Chowk (in front of the Parliament House), and be hanged for three days”.
According to a report by Dawn news, the plea blamed the special court in Pakistan for crossing “all religious moral, civil and constitutional limits, while ruthlessly, irreligiously, unlawfully, unrealistically awarding a debilitating, humiliating, unprecedented verdict against the dignity of a person.” Earlier in December this year, Musharraf, who is currently abroad, had requested the LHC to prevent the special court from sentencing him in absentia. However, Musharraf was sentenced three days later.
The high treason case against Pakistan’s former president was filed by the PML-N government in December 2013 for imposing emergency on November 3, 2007. Musharraf was indicted on March 31, 2014. Although Musharraf was accused of unlawfully suspending the constitution, he never plead guilty and maintained that the charges against him were politically motivated. The former military chief is currently in United Arab Emirates’ Dubai.
(With inputs from IANS)