Pak court adjourns Musharraf hearing till April 9

Pak court adjourns Musharraf hearing till April 9

Pakistan's Supreme Court today adjourned till April 9 the hearing of a petition seeking the registration of a second FIR on Benazir Bhutto's assassination after former military ruler Pervez Musharraf sought more time to file a reply.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry issued the directive after Musharraf's counsel sought time to file a response.

Musharraf has been living in self-exile in London and Dubai since he left Pakistan in early 2009.

The apex court had earlier summoned Musharraf to appear before it today in connection with a petition filed by Bhutto's former protocol officer Aslam Chaudhry, who wants a second FIR to be registered against Musharraf and others in connection with her assassination on December 27, 2007.

The court issued the summons after Musharraf failed to respond to repeated calls to appear in court.

Nobody appeared in the apex court today on behalf of Interior Minister Rehman Malik and former Law Minister Babar Awan, who have been named as respondents in the petition.
The bench resumed hearing the case a day after Aseefa Bhutto and Bakhtawar Bhutto, the daughters of Benazir Bhutto, posted messages on Twitter that contended Musharraf had ordered the hosing down of the site in Rawalpindi where Bhutto was assassinated.
They alleged Musharraf was aware of a conspiracy regarding the assassination.

US writer Mark Siegel, a close aide of Bhutto, too alleged in an article in New York Daily News that Musharraf had knowledge of plans to assassinate Bhutto but had failed to provide her security when she returned to Pakistan from self-exile in late 2007.

Musharraf's failure to provide security to Bhutto, despite his full knowledge that an assassination would be attempted, all but ensured that the conspiracy would succeed, Siegel contended.

Seven suspects, including two senior police officers, are currently facing trial in an anti-terrorism court for Bhutto's assassination.

The police officers were arrested on charges of negligence in providing security to Bhutto.