Petition Filed to Stop Musharraf From Leaving Pakistan

M Zulqernain/Lahore
Petition Filed to Stop Musharraf From Leaving Pakistan
File- AP Photo/Fareed Khan
Petition Filed to Stop Musharraf From Leaving Pakistan

A petition was filed today in the High Court here to stop Pervez Musharraf from leaving Pakistan, a day after the country's top court allowed the former military ruler to travel abroad for medical treatment.

Musharraf, who is facing trial in a number of cases including high treason, is all set to leave for Dubai after the Supreme Court ordered the removal of his name from the Exit Control List (ECL), allowing him to travel abroad.

Petitioner Syed Iqtidar Haider pleaded before the Lahore High Court (LHC) that General Musharraf is facing a treason case under Article 6 of the Constitution for clamping emergency in the country on November 3, 2007, and being a 'suspected traitor' he should not be allowed to leave the country (on the pretext of getting medical treatment).

He asked the court to intervene alleging that the government led by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has struck a deal with Musharraf, 72, therefore it is not going to stop him from proceeding abroad. He requested the court to place the name of Musharraf on ECL again.

Yesterday a five-member bench of SC ordered the government to remove Musharraf's name from the ECL.

The issue of Musharraf's foreign travel arose when the government launched a high treason case against him in 2013 for suspending the constitution in 2007.

The government in April, 2014 banned Musharraf's foreign travels but the Sindh High Court in Karachi rejected the ban in a decision in June, 2014, which was challenged by the government in the Supreme Court.

Musharraf his application stated that his medical condition has greatly worsened.

The application mentioned a May 4, 2014 medical report, prepared by a private medical board consisting of top neurologists and orthopaedic surgeons from Karachi, which stated that Musharraf had fractured his vertebra.

It said the treatment for this kind of a fracture was not available in Pakistan and surgery had to be performed in Dubai, North America or Europe.

Over the past two years, Musharraf’s condition had been deteriorating, but things took a serious turn on February 11, 2016 when he had to be rushed to PNS Shifa Hospital in Karachi, it said.

The high treason case deals with suspension of the Constitution by Musharraf in 2007 which has been declared under Article 6 as being punishable by death.

Musharraf was indicted in April, 2014 but since then no progress has been made in the case for various reasons.

In January, Musharraf was acquitted by an anti-terrorism court in the 2006 murder case of Baloch nationalist leader Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti, the first major relief to the ex-army chief entangled in several high-profile cases.

He came to power in a bloodless coup in 1999, deposing then prime minister Nawaz Sharif. Facing impeachment following elections in 2008, Musharraf was forced to resign as president and went into self-imposed exile in Dubai.

He is facing a slew of court cases after returning from five years in self-exile in Dubai to contest the general election in 2013 which he lost.

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