Friday 17 January 2020
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High treason case: Special Court says no further adjournment

ISLAMABAD: The Special Court hearing high treason case against for military dictator General (R) Pervez Musharraf observed that no adjournment would be granted as decision would be announced on next hearing, Dec 17, 2019. The court gave final adjournment of the hearing until December 17 after the new team of the prosecution sought final adjournment for preparing the case. A three-member bench of the Special Court headed by Justice Waqar Ahmed Seth and comprising Justice Nazar Akbar and Justice Shahid Karim resumed hearing into the complaint lodged by former PML-N government seeking initiation of high treason proceedings against the former president for imposing emergency rule on November 3, 2007.During the course of hearing on Thursday, the new prosecution team comprising Ali Zia Bajwa and Munir Hussain Bhatti, Special Prosecutors along with Dilshad Ahmed Babar, Snr Joint Secretary, Aitzaz ud Din, Deputy Secretary and Awais Javed SC (FIA) Ministry of Interior appeared before the court.Similarly, Raza Bashir, defense counsel assisted by Barrister Salman Safdar also appeared before the court.Raza Bashir, counsel for former president Pervez Musharraf in pursuance of the court s earlier order could not file written arguments.The court in its order noted that despite of clear directions to the learned defense counsel for filing written arguments in rebuttal to the written arguments already submitted by previous prosecutors, he failed to submit the same.The court directed once again the defense counsel to argue the case on the next date of hearing immediately after the conclusion of the arguments of the newly appointed special prosecutors.Ali Zia Bajwa submitted before the court that he and Munir Hussain Bhatti had been appointed as prosecutors in the case and after receiving the notification of his appointment at 4pm on Wednesday they had received a 3,000-page record.The newly appointed learned special prosecutors requested the court to grant final adjournment in order to prepare the case with the undertaking not to seek further adjournment at any cost failing which they would be submitting written arguments two days prior to the next date of hearing.Meanwhile, the court adjourned the hearing until December 17.In March, 2014, the former president was indicted in the caseafter he appeared before the court and rejected all charges.In May, 2016, the court had declared Pervez Musharaf as absconder under Section 87 of Criminal Procedure Code and directed the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to produce him before it on July 12, 2016.Musharraf had expressed his willingness to face the trial under the army s protection and on a surety from the court that he would be given a safe passage to return to Dubai.

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