The special court formed to try former president Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf for treason under Article 6 of the Constitution on Tuesday adjourned its hearing until Jan 1 whereas the former military failed to appear in court after a bomb scare earlier during the day.
The start of former Pakistani military ruler Pervez Musharraf's trial for treason was delayed over security fears Tuesday after explosives were found near the road he was to take to court.
Lawyer Anwar Mansoor Khan told the special treason tribunal that the former
general would not be able to attend, after police found five kilograms (11 pounds) of explosives and detonators.
Justice Faisal Arab, heading the three member bench, said he understood the
“gravity” of Musharraf's situation and that treason was a non-bailable offense.
He asked the former military strongman's lawyers to file an application to exempt their client from appearing in person.
Moreover, Musharraf's senior counsel Barrister Sharifuddin Pirzada raised objections to the formation and appointment of judges for the bench hearing the case.
Justice Arab remarked that such objections should be submitted in writing.
The prosecuting lawyer requested the court to order Musharraf to appear in court adding that non-bailable warrants be issued upon failure to appear in court.
Advocate Ahmed Raza Kasuri, another lawyer for Musharraf, emphasised before
the court, the threats faced by his client citing two previous attacks and other intelligence reports of possible attacks on him.
Justice Yawar, at this point, granted exemption to the former president from
appearing for today's hearing.
According to reports, police officials themselves informed some of the TV channels about the recovery of the explosive material and explosives and asked them to send the camera teams.
The court decided to adjourn the hearing until January 1.
Talking to media persons after hearing of the case, advocates of Musharraf, Ahmed Raza Kasuri and Khalid Ranjha stated that objections have been submitted to challenge the authority of the special court and to object to the appointment of the prosecutor and that the objections will be heard at the next hearing.
The government had on Nov 17 announced its decision to formally prosecute
former president General Pervez Musharraf under Article 6 of the Constitution.
The Supreme Court had already given a ruling in the case in October 2012 and then in July this year disposed off all petitions against the ruling giving the government a green signal to continue proceedings.
In the ‘high treason’ case against the former president, the government has charged him with abrogating, subverting, suspending, holding in abeyance and attempting to conspire against the 1973 Constitution by declaring emergency and overthrowing the superior judiciary in November 2007.
Armed paramilitary Rangers remained deployed around the National Library building during the hearing and shipping containers were put in place to form a security barrier to the compound.