Court rejects plea against Musharraf’s treatment abroad

Islamabad, Jan 6 (IANS) A court in Pakistan Monday rejected a petition seeking to restrain former president Pervez Musharraf from travelling abroad for medical treatment, a media report said.

Rejecting the petition, the Islamabad High Court judge Shaukat Aziz Siddiqi advised petitioner Haroon Rasheed to file an application on this in the trial court, Dawn online reported.
Rasheed, who is the son of Lal Masjid cleric Ghazi Abdul Rasheed who was killed in a security operation against the complex in 2007, urged the court Jan 3 to instruct the interior ministry to provide Musharraf with the best medical facilities in the country and bar him from leaving Pakistan.
Meanwhile, Musharraf’s counsel Ahmad Raza Kasuri said Sunday his client was ill and will not appear in a special court for his high treason trial Monday.
The special court warned Jan 1 it could issue a warrant for the arrest of the former military ruler if he again failed to appear before it Jan 2, after Musharraf failed to show up for the second time in 10 days.
But Musharraf was moved to a hospital on his way to court Jan 2 as he suffered a “heart problem”. On Monday, the special court exempted him from personal appearance.
The option of shifting him abroad for treatment was under consideration.
Musharraf’s name still figures on the list of those people who cannot go abroad without the government’s permission. A court had already turned down his request to remove his name from the Exit Control List and advised him to approach the government.
The government initiated treason charges against the former army chief for suspending, subverting and abrogating the constitution, imposing an emergency in the country in November 2007, and detaining judges of the superior courts.
Musharraf seized power in 1999 in a bloodless coup and was president from 2001 to 2008, when he stepped down and went to live in London in self-exile. He returned to Islamabad in March 2013 to contest in parliamentary elections.
However, a court disqualified him from standing in the May 2013 general elections, which his bete noire, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif – the man he had deposed – won.
Musharraf has been granted bail in four major cases, including that of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto’s assassination.