ISLAMABAD: A three-member bench of special court on Wednesday ordered the production of former President General Retd. Pervez Musharraf on tomorrow at any cost and warned for issuing arrest order on failing to appear before the court.
The three-member bench comprising Justice Faisal Arab, Justice Yawar Abbas and Justice Tahira Safdar initiated hearing without his presence and while ordering for his production in court also warned of issuing a ruling in case the former president failed to appear in court for the next hearing.
The special court constituted to try Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf for treason on Wednesday ordered the former president to appear for the hearing of the case today (Thursday) whereas police presents its plan for the security of the former military ruler, meanwhile the counsel for Musharraf has argued that action under article 06 should be taken against incumbent Prime Minister instead of former military ruler, adding that PM violating the constitution has issued notification of special court.
The member of Musharraf’s legal team Anwar Mansoor Khan raising objection over the statement of Inspector General Police Sikandar Hayyat said that federal police is under the Interior Ministry, so they can not trust on such police.
However, the court rejected the objection as the IGP Sikander informed that 1000 police, Rangers and elite force personal have been deployed for the fool proof security. He submitted written security plan in the special court.
Earlier as court resumed hearing Musharraf’s counsel, Ahmed Raza Kasuri, said his client could not appear for the proceedings due to security threats and also cited that a kilogram of explosive material was recovered and defused near Musharraf’s Chak Shahzad farmhouse residence.
Kasuri added that the judiciary would be responsible if any untoward incident took place, adding that if a bombing occurred, everyone, including the judges of the special court, would be killed as a result.
Responding to which, Justice Faisal Arab, who is heading the special court, cautioned Kasuri to not threaten the court, adding that the counsel’s point had been noted.
Kasuri said the court seemed “more like Shakespearen theatre” as opposed to a special court, adding that Akram Shaikh, chief prosecutor in the case, was a crony of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
In response to the remark, Shaikh said he could speak a hundred times louder than Kasuri, adding that if the court declares him biased, he would part from his role of chief prosecutor.
Also during the proceedings, Justice Faisal said the court could not stop its proceedings on account of security concerns.
Musharraf’s legal team filed three miscellaneous applications in the special court 1st seeking immunity to exempt accuse from appearing before it on account of threats to his security.
The application was filed when Musharraf had been summoned by the special court which was expected to indict the former dictator the same day. His lawyers cited threats to his security as the reason to request the exemption.
In another application, Musharraf’s legal team also requested the court to adjourn the case for a period of five weeks. It alleged that the federal government had failed to put adequate security measures in place for the former president.
The application added that Musharraf had called for the Nov 3, 2007 emergency in his capacity as the country’s military chief, adding that he could only be tried by a military court in that respect as opposed to by the special court as it had been formed.
While third application was consist of the objections over the composition of the special court as well as against the learned judges of the court.
Moreover, Musharraf’s other counsel Anwar Mansoor said all those who aided the violation of the Constitution should be considered guilty just as well. Mansoor accused Prime Minister Sharif for holding bias and retributive motivations against the former army Chief.
Former attorney general Anwar Mansoor Kahn arguing the third application said that that the notification of the special court was illegal because article 90 of the constitution says that executive authority would act on the name of the president and federal government consist of the prime minister, cabinet. Government works through prime minister not prime minister works through cabinet, adding that the notification of special court has been issued by the prime minister with the consultation of the former Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.
He said that constitution says that if a person found guilty of subverting the constitution, he would be tried, adding that still it has not been proved that Musharraf has violated the constitution, so this court can not be constituted, because it has been constituted under high treason act.
On this occasion prosecutor Akram Sheikh interfering said that court can not hear this case without the presence of the accused, however the court asked him to remain calm, adding that it is not constitutional court but a special court.
Anwar Mansoor Khan said that single person (PM) is biased towards Musharraf and he is taking advantage of his authority and is working against the constitution. He (prime minister) should be tried under article 06, because he has violated the constitution.
He said that cabinet has not decided for constitution of the court, it is on man decision who issued the notification. He read the notification issued by the federal government and another statement of Attorney General (AG) presented in the apex court on the occasion. He said that statement of AG clearly says that government has earlier decided to punish his client.
He said that under section 4 of criminal law act there is no consultation for the constitution of such court but PM maliciously has consulted the former chief Justice Chaudhry and these both personalities have been directly affected by the Musharraf.
He questioning said that federal government is complainant and he has constituted the special court, whether it is justice? He said that if we talk about constitution than we should act according to it.
Reading the section 05 of the criminal law at Anwar Mansoor said that it is my contention that this is not a complaint so this is not a court as well.
He said that prosecution has relied upon the case of Sindh High court Bar Association, which has been authored by the former Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and we can see that there is clear biasness, so such actions have no worth. It is the fraud with the law of the state, he added.
After hearing the arguments of Musharraf’s lawyers, Justice Arab remarked that only one counsel for the former military dictator should appear in the next hearing of the case to avoid a state of confusion.
Moreover, Islamabad’s Inspector General of Police also appeared in court and informed the bench of the plans regarding the security for Gen (r) Musharraf.
He added that a thousand police personnel were deputed on the route from Mushharf’s farmhouse to the court. The bench adjourned the hearing over the case until today January 02.
Top security arrangements had been made for Musharraf’s scheduled appearance before the special court.
The arrangements made for his security include ‘box security’ and combing and scanning of the entire route before his departure from his farmhouse in Chak Shahzad to National Library in the Red Zone where the court was set up.
Hundreds of policemen, along with a contingent of commandos and Rangers personnel were part of the security measures for the former president. Deputy Inspector General of Police (Security) was to monitor all security measures, including a motorcade of personnel, along with jammers, a fire engine and an ambulance.
Police personnel had also been deployed and personnel of the bomb disposal squad combed the entire route and areas adjacent to it. Police and Rangers personnel were also deployed around the special court. Containers were also placed around the National Library.