The Supreme court of Pakistan refused to hear an appeal which was moved on the behalf of the former Army Chief and President Pervez Musharraf against his conviction in the high treason case. Musharraf was sentenced to death in absentia for treason over his 2007 imposition of emergency rule in Pakistan.
The court returned the appeal on the grounds that unless the petitioner surrenders himself, the plea cannot be entertained. Meanwhile, Musharraf’s counsel is expected to soon file an appeal against the return of petition. The petition which was moved by Musharraf’s barrister Salman Safdar had pleaded that the verdict should be set aside since the trial was conducted and completed in the sheer violation of the constitution. Moreover, the appeal also sought the right of the audience before the supreme court in the physical absence of the former President as well as the suspension of the judgement in the interest of justice and fair play.
The Lahore High Court on January 13 declared the death penalty verdict against former Pakistani Army Chief and President Pervez Musharraf as “null and void”. It also ruled that the Constitution of the Special Court which pronounced the original judgment was “unlawful”.
On December 17, a 3-judge special court, in a 2-1 majority verdict, found the ailing 76-year-old ex-Pakistan President, now living in Dubai on self-exile, guilty of high treason by abrogating the Constitution and imposing extra-constitutional emergency in Pakistan in November 2007 and handed him the death sentence. Subsequently, he approached the Lahore High Court (LHC) with three petitions, challenging his conviction. He has challenged not only the conviction but also the formation of the special court that handed him the death penalty for high treason, as well as the complaint filed against him by the government of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif that resulted in the trial.