ISLAMABAD : Supreme Court on Tuesday assured to not arrest former president Pervez Musharraf in any case until he appears in the court.
A three-member bench of apex court headed by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar was hearing the case related to National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) passed by Musharraf in 2007
During the hearing, the former president’s counsel Akhtar Shah informed the bench that his client was suffering from an ailment of a serious nature. To this, Justice Nisar said that Musharraf should get his ailment treated. “I too am suffering from a painful backache. We have arrangements for top-of-the-line treatment for Musharraf’s ailment here,” he said.
The Chief Justice remarked that the Supreme Court will continue issuing red warrants if Pervez Musharraf does not return to Pakistan.
Akhtar Shah apprised the court that he had talked to his client on September 27. “Musharraf has medical and security issues but he has promised that he will return,” he added
Further, the defense counsel contended that his client was not accused in the Lal Masjid case. “Musharraf has not been indicted,” Shah said.
Responding to the former president’s lawyer, Justice Nisar said: “I had earlier told you that nobody will arrest Musharraf. He should record his statement in the treason case before a special court.”
The top judge further remarked that the courts could not allow Musharraf to reject their authority. “If Musharraf will continue to stay abroad, we will keep issuing red warrants,” Justice Nisar said.
“Musharraf must avoid any situation where he may have to return to Pakistan in a way that will cause embarrassment,” the judge remarked adding that the former president and Ishaq Dar are both hiding in foreign countries.
Moreover, Justice Nisar said Musharraf will be provided with security no matter where he lands in Pakistan. “We are granting him a protective bail,” he added.
The court has ordered the lawyer to submit reply regarding ex-military official’s return to Pakistan till October 11.
It merits mentioning here that all graft cases against Pakistanis were shelved in 2007 after then attorney general Malik Qayum wrote to the Swiss authorities following the promulgation of the NRO by then president of Pakistan Pervez Musharraf.