IHC rejects Musharraf’s pleas against trial court

* Court declares all three objections to special court as inadmissible
IHC rejects Musharraf’s   pleas against trial court

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Monday rejected all three petitions filed by former military ruler Pervez Musharraf against the special court constituted to try him for treason.
In his petition Musharraf raised objections over the authority of the special court, appointment of judges and prosecutor. The decision was announced by Justice Riaz Ahmad Khan, who declared the requests inadmissible. The special court comprises Sindh High Court’s Justice Faisal Arab, Justice Tahira Safdar of the Balochistan High Court and Justice Yawar Ali of the Lahore High Court. Khalid Ranjha, counsel for Musharraf, challenged the authority of the special court and stated that his client was the army chief when he introduced the 2007 emergency and only a military court could examine his actions.
The two other petitions filed by Barrister Anwar Mansoor challenge the appointment of the judges for the special court and Akram Sheikh as prosecutor in the treason case. In these two petitions, Barrister Anwar Mansoor had taken the stance that these appointments were not legitimate. Musharraf has been summoned by the special court on December 24 (today) to face treason charges under Article 6 of the constitution. He has been accused of subverting, suspending and aborting the constitution, imposing emergency in November 2007 and detaining superior courts’ judges.
The government had constituted the special court on November 19 for the treason trial of Musharraf. It is for the first time in Pakistan’s history that a former army chief is being tried under Article 6 of the constitution. The special court will work in the Islamabad High Court building. Ministry of Law and Justice Secretary Zafarullah Khan submitted a letter to the Supreme Court registrar for the constitution of the special court under the Criminal Law Amendment (special courts) Act 1976. The government invoked the power vested in it under section 4 of the Criminal Law Amendment (Special Courts) Act 1976 (Act No.XVII of 1976 to establish a special court to try Musharraf.

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