In a ruling that comes as a breather for former Pakistan President and dictator, Pervez Musharraf , a top court in Islamabad declared his “complaint and trial” in the high treason case as “unconstitutional” leading to the annulment of his death penalty by a special tribunal.
It may be recalled that earlier a special court of Islamabad on December 17 last handed down the death penalty to 74-year-old Musharraf after six years of hearing the high-profile treason case against him. The case was filed by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz government in 2013.
A three-member full bench of the Lahore high court comprising Justices Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, Mohammad Ameer Bhatti and Chaudhry Masood Jahangir unanimously declared the formation of the special court against Musharraf as “unconstitutional”.
The court also ruled that the treason case against Musharraf was not prepared in accordance with the law.
“The Lahore high court has declared unconstitutional all actions right from initiation of complaint and its conclusion against General (retd) Musharraf by the special court,” said Additional Attorney General of Pakistan Ishtiaq A Khan.
“Gen Musharraf is a free man now,” he added.
Khan earlier told the bench that the special court was constituted without the formal approval of the Cabinet. He also maintained that the charges filed against the former president were flimsy since, under the emergency powers of the executive, fundamental rights could be suspended.