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Musharraf case: Justice Arab hasn’t recused; arrest order stands

Updated Mar 27, 2014 03:00pm


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Police officers stand guard at the gate of the special court formed to try Pervez Musharraf for treason. — Photo by Reuters/File
Police officers stand guard at the gate of the special court formed to try Pervez Musharraf for treason. — Photo by Reuters/File

ISLAMABAD: Justice Faisal Arab of the Sindh High Court on Thursday excused himself from today's hearing of the treason case against former military ruler Gen (r) Pervez Musharraf but later had to issue a statement that he had merely walked out of the hearing, DawnNews reported.

Earlier today, it had been widely reported that Justice Arab had recused himself from the court following an exchange of arguments with Musharraf's counsel Anwar Mansoor.

However, the judge later clarified that he had only walked out of today's proceedings as opposed to dissociating himself from the case altogether.

Adjourning the case to March 31, the court also ruled that its earlier order for the government to arrest and produce Musharraf if he refused to appear before it on the said date on his own remained intact.

Earlier during today's hearing, Mansoor had argued over the court's earlier order of the issuing of a non-bailable arrest warrant against his client.

Mansoor told the judges that inclusion of the arrest warrant in the court's order gave the impression that the former military strongman was not appearing before the court on purpose, adding that that was not the case. He said his client had serious reservations against the court's move.

Upon hearing this, chief prosecutor Akram Shaikh began his line of arguments but was interrupted by Mansoor who said that the defence team had objections against Shaikh's appointment as prosecutor, adding that the court had reserved its order over the matter.

He moreover said that Shaikh should not be allowed to argue in court as the defence team had been raising objections against his appointment from day one as well as against the manner in which the proceedings were taking place.

Mansoor further claimed that it was common knowledge in the corridors of the National Assembly and the Senate that Shaikh was tasked with the objective of awarding punishment to Musharraf.

Justice Arab said that submission of an application against the prosecutor's appointment did not mean he should be stopped from arguing in court. The judge added that it was the court's job to make a decision on the matter and if the application was accepted only then could Shaikh be stopped from performing his duties as chief prosecutor.

Subsequently, Justice Arab left the court room saying that if the defence did not think the judges to be impartial, the country had no shortage of jurists who could be asked to do the job.


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Comments (36) Closed

Hasan Abdal wala Mar 27, 2014 11:31am

Even the 'Dehati Aurats' knew, Mr. Arub was prejudiced against Musharraf. The most vehement of the three.

khanm Mar 27, 2014 12:07pm

I think it

excalibur Mar 27, 2014 12:08pm

Tribunal will collapse like a house of cards. Truth will triumph. Persecutor will be the next to go

Asad Mar 27, 2014 12:30pm

As if Mr. Justice today came to knew that defence team had reservations against judges. A fake trial is continuing just for the sake of diverting attention of people from main issues.

deendayal lulla Mar 27, 2014 01:01pm

At least this judge recused himself from the case. Some judges are of the opinion that a judge cannot be biased,and the counsel or the litigant may be threatened with contempt proceedings,and the same judge continues to hear the case. An area for judicial reforms.

RM Mar 27, 2014 01:38pm

Justice Arab has left only after making it sure that Musharaf was thrown on the ground and completely humiliated. Throughout the proceedings his comments and actions were clear demonstration of his bias. Issuing arrest warrant to produce him in the court for someone who had already appeared in the court more than once, was just too much.

Uza Syed Mar 27, 2014 01:41pm

Good so! There never was any doubts in the minds of all observers about the collective bias of this "Special" court and all its members individually. This man should have never been given this job to begin with and knowing his bias (personal interest!), in getting even with President Musharraf, Judge Faisal Arab should not have accepted the position. Good that finally he accepts the blame of biasness and decides to go, the rest of the partisan members should also resign and respect the requirement for a fair trial, the basic need for justice, is a neutral court which they are not.

Rashid Hai Mar 27, 2014 01:54pm

Sorry for Justice Faisal Arab and kudos for Mr Mansoor, Mr Kasuri and Mr Ejaz. It is better to nominate Fformer CJ as the head of Musharraf's trial court (and that too a single bench court).

Mohammad Iqbal Mar 27, 2014 02:19pm

From day one, the common belief was that the judges and the whole bench is partial and the public prosecutors arguments further endorsed the general opinion. Justice Faisal Arab's belated recuses from the special court smells something else. Yesterday, Chief prosecutor revealed that the retired general will be either hanged or will be given life imprisonment. Was it a leak of the already decided case. If so, his early unwanted utterances forced Justice Faisal Arab to depart from this case without pronouncing judgement. Besides this, there is no apprent reason for this change of drama.

Wachucha Mar 27, 2014 02:48pm

@Rashid Hai: Yes, as this regime is bent upon breaking all the records of corruption and as all the important ministeries are kept by NS himself, he may announce himself as new CJ and appoint former CJ in place of Faisal Arab.

Aslam Chohan Mar 27, 2014 03:03pm

These judges are disgracing the judiciary. Their bias verdicts and their emotional behavior is unbecoming of a judge. Very sad. Iftikhar Chaudhry removed a good chunk of good judges and put inlace inexperienced individuals as judges. The judiciary today is in a worse shape than 10 years ago.

AAK Mar 27, 2014 03:08pm


Ahmer Jamil Khan Mar 27, 2014 03:36pm

It is shameful to see how apparent is Musharraf's belief that he is above the law. The former dictator and his party which has no representation amongst the people, have spent a lot of time, money and efforts to attempt to scandalize the judiciary. I have personally witnessed the court proceedings of Justice Faisal Arab in the Sindh High Court, and I must say, I have no doubt on his lordship's honesty, integrity and unbiased judgements. Certain counsels of Musharraf have no manners, respect for rule of law and no decency. I am surprised at the restraint shown by the special court judges in issuing contempt notices to these hooligans.

khanm Mar 27, 2014 03:49pm

this is what i wrote for you, but now with heavy heart i take it back... It was my mistake..."I think it

Dr.M.M.Khan Mar 27, 2014 05:13pm

Can any one really think Muaharraf can get a fair trial?

Rabwah wala Mar 27, 2014 05:57pm

the judge goes away he comes back.

Naseer Mar 27, 2014 06:30pm

Populer impression now is that Taliban are much more strong and sincere to their leader than Pakistan Army. When Taliban leader was killed, they killed so many Pakistani and army personnel, although Pakistan had not killed him. Look how Taliban, Judiciary and our courts are targeting Ex army Chief, but you don't see any reaction whatsoever from the army. Although Ex general was sincere to Pakistan and Pakistani's, whereas Taliban are the worst enemies of Pakistan and Pakistanis.

Husain Jan Mar 27, 2014 06:33pm

@Hasan Abdal wala: Since Mush lawyers have no material to defend their boss, thus filing of unnecessary appeals and objections on the Judge as well as on the prosecutor. Widely seen and believed that delaying the case is the sole purpose. Sooner or later dooms day for their boss is the only fate.

excalbur Mar 27, 2014 06:37pm

Unheard of First recuse and then sent back again by NS

M. Johri ---canada Mar 27, 2014 06:41pm

@Dr.M.M.Khan: The answer is NO. This trial is in fact dirty game of Pakistani politics .Nawaz brothers are heading it.

Wachucha Mar 27, 2014 07:39pm


Old Lahori Mar 27, 2014 07:44pm

@excalibur: and you, of course, know what justice is. The constitution is clear, the only just response to overthrowing a elected govt. is death.

Old Lahori Mar 27, 2014 07:46pm

why should he? The one lives by the sword has no claim on justice.

He should have been sentenced long time ago.

Sajid Mar 27, 2014 08:08pm

@Aslam Chohan: In the opinion of you people Abdul Hameed Dogar and his coterie should be brought back and the good old days of absolute Justice should prevail!!!

Sajid Mar 27, 2014 08:19pm

@Dr.M.M.Khan: Everyone, except a very FEW Musharraf lovers, believes that a very fair trial is being conducted, and every opportunity is being given to his lawyers to present all sorts of their arguments to exonerate their client. But their client is too afraid even to appear in the court and is hiding in army hospital. May Allah give him courage to at least appear in the Court.

Nasir Mar 27, 2014 08:35pm

Justice Faisal Arab and the judiciary judges in this case must be removed for they have become controversial. In order to have impartial judiciary and independent judiciary it is absolutely important that defendant must not have reservations of judiciary being biased. The question is why only Iftikhar Chaudhary's handpicked judges are on this case? Why defendant and prosecution cannot come to a compromise judges who are impartial and independent? I think this judiciary in Musharraf case has become politicized and partial they need to change them.

Syed Ahmed Mar 27, 2014 09:22pm

The government, the prosecutor's and the judges of the special court

Syed Ahmed Mar 27, 2014 09:28pm

@Ahmer Jamil Khan: Rubbish, unbelievable story. Neither the chief prosecutor nor the judge in question are honest and truthful.

Syed Ahmed Mar 27, 2014 09:31pm

@Dr.M.M.Khan: Fair trial - no way.

m5 Mar 27, 2014 09:35pm

@Dr.M.M.Khan: Why do you think the ex dictator would not get a fair trial? The problem is that he still thinks that he is above law and the judiciary does not means anything to him. He is a coward who has taken refuge in the hospital wining about heart aches which is a complete lie.

Mubashir Munir Mar 27, 2014 10:19pm

did Musharraf not broke Pakistan constituition?,Is he a saint? I did not understand objections to his trial.. It seems that judiciary is being pressed just as Musharraf did ti Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry while lawyers of Pervez Musharrah have threatened. every one,how they behave like this and judges not react and do not ask that it is the disgrace of courts and charge Musharraf in this account also.Is there are no rules for Musharraf,Is he an angel or super human being. Pervez Musharraf did not attend court,while previous prime ministers was brought to court .It is evident that Musharraf will not be subject to rules which were applied to civilians what a mockery of our judiciary by those who are giving threats to judges and lawyers where is justice.It is very gloomy state of affairs please make our house in order may Allah guide us to do right justice for every indvidual

Joker Mar 27, 2014 10:21pm

The funny antics of Musharraf's lawyers & even his continuous hideout in hospital cannot prevent punishment of the dictator from high treason!

M. Johri ---canada Mar 27, 2014 10:50pm

@Old Lahori: My friend , same goes for Nawaz & company. That would be fair enough.

Mubashir Munir Mar 27, 2014 11:03pm

Musharraf should be punished for his crimes

Dr.M.M.Khan Mar 28, 2014 01:29am

@RM: When a judge leaves the court in a huff, he betrays his emotional instability. Clearly Mushrraf's defence team has got under the skin of both the judge and the public prosecutor. A judge is supposed to keep his cool and maintain the dignity of the court. This judge has failed!

Hatman Mar 28, 2014 07:25am

@khanm: There seems no justice system but the will of the civil administration to please their kind masters running the show.