Former President Pervez Musharraf.—AFP (File Photo)

ISLAMABAD: Pakistani lawmakers on Monday repeated their call for former military ruler Pervez Musharraf to be arrested and tried for treason on his return home from self-imposed exile in Dubai.

Meanwhile, All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) Central Information Secretary Aasia Ishaq said that preparations are in full swing to accord a historic welcome to their party chief.

People of Karachi will receive the APML chief in an unprecedented historic manner, said Aasia while talking to a delegation of the party’s office-bearers belonging to Hyderabad.

Musharraf has said he will return next Sunday to contest elections that are expected in May.

“I am arriving in Pakistan on March 24th. I need your support,” Musharraf said on his Facebook page early Monday, but lawmakers demanded his immediate arrest.

Musharraf is wanted in Pakistan over the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto in a gun and suicide attack after an election rally in Rawalpindi, the headquarters of the army, on December 27, 2007.

“A senate resolution adopted in January last year is very clear that he should be arrested and prosecuted,” senator Raza Rabbani, a leader of the ruling Pakistan People's Party (PPP), told AFP.

“It is the expression of the will of the lawmakers.” The resolution adopted unanimously by the upper house demanded Musharraf's arrest and institution of a treason case against the former dictator, who seized power in a bloodless coup in 1999. The maximum penalty for treason is hanging.

APML leader Aasia Ishaq said that return of the party chief had instilled passion and warmth among the masses while on the other hand, she added, “the corrupt leaders had been stuck to a state of intimidation because of their inner fear that they would then face strong opposition of the oppressed people under the dynamic leadership of Musharraf.”

Musharraf’s return would be a turning point in the politics of the country because the people wanted to bring about a change in the corrupt political system of the country and Musharraf had the potential to kindle the light of the change, she said.

Pakistani courts have issued warrants for his arrest over the death of Bhutto, whose widower is President Zardari, and the 2006 death of a rebel leader in the southwest.

A caretaker administration is to take over next week to replace President Asif Ali Zardari's government, which became the first elected civilian administration in Pakistan to complete a full five-year term in office.

Musharraf has divided his time between London and Dubai since stepping down in August 2008, and much of his power base in Pakistan has evaporated– AFP/PPI


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Comments (38) Closed




Asif Kahsmiri
Mar 18, 2013 03:36pm
well come... he is a lot better then those who currently are in power , no question about that!
Saleem
Mar 18, 2013 03:42pm
The government is asking for his arrest and procecution because they are afraid of him and want to keep hide their illegal money made out of Pakistani people. They are thieves, and in fact they should be tried, and prosecuted.
Amjad Wyne
Mar 18, 2013 03:55pm
"Musharraf's power based may be evaporated" as the article claims but rest assured that the disdain for the present lot of leaders have sky rocketed too.
Realistic
Mar 18, 2013 03:56pm
Welcome back! We do love you.
Saj
Mar 18, 2013 04:01pm
Come on Musharraf- You were great- Unfortunately your downfall was the advisors you had.
M.Asghar
Mar 18, 2013 04:03pm
Musharraf should have stayed in Pakistan, because his going away has decisively devalued him.
Oz
Mar 18, 2013 04:15pm
Politics of tit for tat again.. He kicked out the corrupt and brought into open the cases against the corrupt politicians. However, he was a victim of his own success - I dont like him he is far above PPP and PML and that JUI gang - no matter how many groups they form, they are full of corrupt politicians that carry gangs with them. Have we not seen enough on pakistani news channels already ? Let him come and defend his case - Knowing our country's politics, he will also be pardonend like the rest of political mafia.
imran
Mar 18, 2013 04:21pm
We are looking forward to welcoming you..
Aamir
Mar 18, 2013 04:53pm
Yes, he should come back to his home but he must be tried in court for his actions. He should defend himself in the court without Army intervention. If he proved guilty, should be put behind bar and not guilty then he should be allowed to be part of this election......
Cyrus Howell
Mar 18, 2013 05:03pm
Putting Musharraf into prison will solve nothing. It might even spark revolt. He would be safe returning.
Riaz
Mar 18, 2013 05:21pm
Long Live Gen. Musharraf! All the best for your return, and may Allah be with you. I don't know what our lawmakers are talking about ... and I don't understand how treason came into being. General saheb asked BB not to go out in public as there was danger to her life, but BB didn't listen. If Person A asks Person B not to step into fire, but if Person B still does it, then how can Person A be blamed for not warning Person B and be charged for treason? This is ridiculous and doesn't make sense to an educated person!
Khalid
Mar 18, 2013 06:00pm
I would love to be in Pakistan to welcome Mr. Mushrraf. My late father always said "he is the one who will save our country, nobody is perfect and Mr. Musharraf is no exception but he is the best we have". This son of Pakistan will always be remembered for enhancing the image of Pakistan the world over and also the way economy picked up during his time was a record. Good luck Mr. Musharraf.
Haider Naqvi
Mar 18, 2013 06:10pm
Welcome back our hero! Love you!
Michael Malcolm
Mar 18, 2013 06:22pm
The greatest of all greats of Pakistan is Mushrraf. He is no coward and those who are calling for his arrest specially Senator Rabbani and other corrupt and dishonest and untruthful are fearing that the real Pandora Box will open and the masses will sting them that they can never rise again. Welcome Musharraf Karachi or rather Pakistan will witness unprecedented historic visit.
I. Kamal
Mar 18, 2013 06:25pm
"It is the expression of the will of the lawmakers
mustafa
Mar 18, 2013 06:27pm
The greatest Pakistani leader after Jinnah.
Syed
Mar 18, 2013 06:27pm
Practically he is the only who has been tested and tried for his competence,at the time when Shrifas had doomed the country by their Green Channel and Mulk Bachao drama. He has the potentials, character strength, vission and international standing to get the country out of this humiliating state. May Allah save him from these frauds and killers, lebled as politicians.
Nasr KiKi
Mar 18, 2013 06:30pm
InshaAllah 110 percent better than all the corrupt rusted junk destined for junkyard in the next election
faisal
Mar 18, 2013 06:31pm
Musharaf is way better than these political crocodiles
Ali (UAE)
Mar 18, 2013 06:59pm
ONLY PARVEZ MUSHARRAF CAN SAVE OUR COUNTRY AFTER (ALLAH)
hyderphd74
Mar 18, 2013 07:00pm
What courts do you suggest should try him? The courts that are full of incompetent, illegally appointed, and "corrupt to their necks" judiciary? Come on, you must be joking!. If they want him to be tried for Benazir Bhutto's assassination, then he has nothing to fear because technically speaking Ms. Bhutto committed suicide if any. Why did she raise her head out of the armored, bullet-proof vehicle. Mr. Musharraf did not have the seats fitted with springs to jolt her up, or did he? If he is responsible for one death then the present government is responsible for several thousand killed by the terrorist groups which are linked to it or on its payroll. THOSE LIVING IN GLASS HOUSES SHOULD NOT THROW STONES AT OTHERS.
Jawwad
Mar 18, 2013 07:12pm
Yep, his only crime was selling Pakistani Citizens to another state for money. Oh, not to mention, this move emboldened Western countries to pick up , interrogate, detain, torture and deport Pakistanis from Western countries. Do you even understand the ramifications of Musharraf' doings? We, believe in the Pakistan of Jinnah which stands for justice and rights for everyone. In Jinnah's Pakistan, we'd like to see terrorist being punished according to the law and not to the whims on one man.
Mustafa
Mar 18, 2013 07:21pm
Dictator
shahidmasud12
Mar 18, 2013 07:57pm
Did Musharaf ever had any power base ? Because in my opinion much of the power base he enjoyed consisted of politicians who always can win elections and these politicians has already made a political party known as PML (Q), he has no roots among the people Pakistan .
avid_supporter
Mar 18, 2013 08:14pm
Welcome Mr. Musharraf. Please help us get rid of the current corrupt government and its hooligans.
Mohammad Iqbal
Mar 18, 2013 08:39pm
He and Hasan Nisar are only honest and true pakistani and he is the only one who have a vision where this country should go love him.
nadeem from USA
Mar 18, 2013 08:50pm
Welcome Musharraf, Pakistan need you sir, only sincere Leader in Pakistan, Support him people now he is trying to come through Democratic way, you had chosen and given your sympathized vote to PPP and Country is upside down under the fake slogan of their democracy, Give him a chance, Long live Musharraf !!
Chaigram
Mar 18, 2013 10:05pm
Welcome back, General. In any case in the land of blind, one eyed is king......
Aleem
Mar 18, 2013 11:10pm
Jawwad, Do you have a proof? If he did sell Pakistan than he should have stayed abroad with all the money he made from selling Pakistan. Why would he come back in a country where all of his property has been taken away for rumors and his life being openly threatened? Answer please.
Feroze Parekh
Mar 18, 2013 11:13pm
Hope Musharraf has learned from his past mistakes and does right and corrects previous wrongs. Other than Imran and Musharraf, I don't see anybody out there with genuine desire and integrity to help the people of Pakistan come out of this corrupted mess. Feroze
Abdur Razzaque
Mar 19, 2013 12:01am
Everybody is overwhelmed with the greediness of power and prestige. A true lover of a country is on the other end. Patriotism is a kind of love of your own beliefs. The true believers and followers of the religion doesn't know to bow down to anythings. A perfect ruler in Islam is the true replica of the existing ideology and practices of the country. In other sense he is considered as the shadow of Allah (swt) for that particular country would engage himself to run the administration impartially and most accurately. Let us review,measure and consider Mr. Musharraf and his past activities can match this criteria or not.The decision is up to the people of Pakistan (not to any egoist).
Hira Anwar
Mar 19, 2013 12:24am
I believe Musharraf returning to the political scene of Pakistan won't make a huge difference because PTI has already charged the sentiments of people of Pakistan if they opt for a third party force.But if we compare musharaf's government with PPP's then it is apparent how dismal current conditions are. It can only be prayed that elections are held on time and people do not try those corrupt leaders again who have greatly damaged our country's prospects.
alan
Mar 19, 2013 12:30am
the son of pakistan who left his mother the day he was out of power chair, same as altaf, same as asif.
Tahir
Mar 19, 2013 12:31am
Let's see? Could it be something to do with him overthrowing an elected government and seizing power?
Abdur
Mar 19, 2013 01:07am
"It is the expression of the will of the lawmakers". This must be a joke! It should read, "it is the expression of the will of the most corrupt and criminals" These people are now wetting their pants, because they no longer have a free reign in the country and someone is coming to challenge them.
Mustafa
Mar 19, 2013 01:55am
What Bull are you talking? Did anyone ever told the Holy Prophet "you should have stayed in Mecca because your going away may devalue you" (Astaghfirullah).
Ismail Suleman
Mar 19, 2013 08:50am
HE IS THE BEST LEADER EVER AND THE ONLY HOPE FOR PAKISTAN
Majority
Mar 20, 2013 09:31am
@ Mustafa I am amused by the last word in your comment! It applies well to what you say more than what Mr. Asghar has said. Musharraf is no different than any other criminal who has to be tried before a court of law.