Musharraf opted emergency to avoid ineligibility: Iftikhar Chaudhry
f Justice of Pakistan Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has declared that former president General (r) Pervez Musharraf suspended the Constitution only to protect himself from being declared ineligible for reelection by the Supreme Court. The CJ said this as Supreme Court of Pakistan on Wednesday resumed the hearing of much-anticipated case regarding the appointment of ad hoc judges in Sindh High Court. The bench is also mulling over the extra-constitutional steps of imposing emergency rule and dismissing more than 60 judges of the apex courts by then President General (r) Pervez Musharraf on November 3, 2007. The court has also issued a notice to former president to present his stance, by himself or by his counsel, before the 14-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry. However, no counsel of the former president was present in the court room today. Renowned lawyer and former President Supreme Court Bar Association Hamid Khan started his arguments on the case on Wednesday. During his arguments Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry observed that the situation was normal in the country till October 6, 2007 and the Supreme Courts progress was widely being hailed. No one had advised to dissolve the government till October 26, 2007, the CJ added. Justice Iftikhar said that former president Musharraf suspended the Constitution and imposed emergency only to protect himself from being declared ineligible for reelection by the Supreme Court. He said that the history provides not a single example that Martial Law was imposed against the judiciary.