Pak court to hear Musharraf's plea from Jan 9

Last Updated 24 December 2019, 16:53 IST

A Pakistani court on Tuesday constituted a full bench to hear former military dictator Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf's petitions against the formation of a special court that sentenced him to death in a high treason case, a media report said.

The three-member special court bench sentenced 76-year-old Musharraf to death in absentia on Tuesday for high treason following a six-year legal case.

Musharraf had earlier moved the LHC against the constitution of the special court.

The Lahore High Court full bench comprises justices Sayyed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, Muhammad Ameer Bhatti, and Chaudhry Muhammad Masood Jahangir, Geo TV reported.

The bench will hear Musharraf's petition from January 9, 2020, it said.

Musharraf, who is currently in Dubai where he is seeking treatment for multiple diseases, has raised serious questions on his trial and said that the verdict was based on some people's "personal animosity" towards him.

"I call it (verdict) a suspicious judgment because it disregarded the principle of supremacy of law from the beginning. I'd rather say that if going by the Constitution, this case should not have been heard," Musharraf, who sounded weak and seriously ill, said in a video message recorded from his hospital bed in Dubai last week.

"Some people in high offices misused their authority to target one individual," he said, in an apparent reference to Chief Justice of Pakistan Asif Saeed Khosa.

Khosa, who retired on Friday, last month said that the post-2009 judiciary had convicted one prime minster (Yousuf Raza Gilani); disqualified another (Nawaz Sharif); and was soon going to decide the treason case against a former army chief (Musharraf).

Following Musharraf's sentencing, the Pakistan Army said that its former chief can "never be a traitor" and the verdict against him has been received with "lot of pain and anguish" by Pakistan Armed Forces personnel.

Alarmed by the military's public statement, Prime Minister Imran Khan quickly deployed two of his trusted aides to assuage the Army to say that the government would defend the self-exiled, ailing ex-president during the hearing of an appeal to be filed on his behalf.

(Published 24 December 2019, 16:53 IST)

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