Shifting of treason trial to military court : Musharraf decides to file intra-court appeal against dismissal of plea

Shifting of treason trial to military court :  Musharraf decides to file intra-court appeal against dismissal of plea

ISLAMABAD: Pervez Musharraf has decided to file an intra-court appeal (ICA) in the Islamabad High Court against the dismissal of his plea that he be tried in a military court because he remains subject to the Army Act 1952 even after his retirement.
Talking to Daily Times, Musharraf’s counsel, Advocate Chaudhry Faisal Hussain said that the former military ruler’s legal team has decided to file an ICAs this week against the dismissal of three petitions regarding the formation of the special court for his treason trial as well as appointment of a special prosecutor. He said that they would obtain the Islamabad High Court’s orders on Thursday (today) on three petitions for filing of ICAs in this regard. 
The counsel stated that the legal team was very disappointed that the IHC had rejected their petitions without giving proper reasons. Earlier, Musharraf, through his counsel Dr Khalid Ranjha, argued that the alleged acts were committed by him when he was holding an office in the Pakistan Army and “by virtue of Section 92 of the Pakistan Army Act, 1952 he remains the subject of the Army Act even after the retirement”. “If the trial is allowed to be proceeded as it is with the respondent No 1 (Special Court), it would cause gross prejudice to the petitioner and would be violative of the petitioner’s mandatory constitutional right as enshrined under Article 10-A of the constitution of Pakistan 1973,” he said.
The former army chief also said that it was essentially a matter falling within the jurisdiction of military court and the enabling laws stipulated in the Pakistan Army Act, 1952. The two other petitions filed by Advocate 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. The decision was announced by Justice Riaz Ahmad Khan, who declared the requests inadmissible. It must be noted that the IHC has asked the applicant to raise these contentions before special court.
Meanwhile, senior lawyers believe that there is a lack of coordination among Musharraf’s legal team’s members; therefore, they have failed to devise proper strategy regarding the high treason case. On the other hand, an important meeting of Pakistan Bar Council’s executive body is being held today (Thursday). One PBC executive member Ramzan Chaudhry said that there is chance that apex body of the lawyers would express its view regarding the trial of Musharraf in high treason case as well as Supreme Court’s July 31, 2009 judgement.

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