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QUETTA: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Quetta on Monday acquitted former president General Pervez Musharraf in a case pertaining to the alleged murder of former Baloch nationalist leader Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti.

The court also acquitted former provincial home minister Mir Shoaib Nosherwani and Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) chief and member of National Assembly Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao.

After the announcement of the decision by ATC-1 Judge Jan Muhammad Gohar, the lawyer representing Jamil Bugti, Sohail Rajput, announced his decision to challenge the judgment of the court.

"We are not satisfied with this judgement and we will challenge it," Rajput told reporters outside court.

Read:Jamil Bugti seeks exhumation of father’s body

Sherpao expressed satisfaction over the judgment and said justice was upheld by the court.

The ATC court, noticing the absence of other co-accused, issued permanent arrest warrants for former premier Shaukat Aziz, former governor of Balochistan Owais Ahmed Ghani and former DCO Dera Bugti Samad Lasi for not appearing before the court despite repeated notices pertaining to Bugti murder case.

-Front page Dawn August 27, 2006
-Front page Dawn August 27, 2006

The court also rejected the request by Nawabzada Jamil Akbar Bugti, eldest son of late Nawab Akbar Bugti, to order exhumation of the body of his father to confirm that the body buried in Dera Bugti was that of his father.

In a separate application, Nawabzada Bugti had requested the court to summon the members of a parliamentary committee who had met Akbar Bugti following the violence in Dera Bugti in March 2005 in which dozens were killed.

Jamil Akbar Bugti, had earlier nominated Gen Musharraf, Aziz, Ghani, former chief minister the late Jam Mohammad Yousuf, former interior minister Aftab Sherpao, former home minister Mir Mohammad Shoaib Nausherwani and Mr Lasi in the FIR registered at the Dera Bugti police station.

An FIR was registered under sections 302 and 304 of the Pakistan Penal Code against Musharraf and others in 2009 for their alleged involvement in Bugti’s murder.

Former president Pervez Musharraf was indicted in the case in January 2015. He had been staying with his daughter in Karachi where he travelled for tests at a navy-run hospital in April last year and the indictment took place in his absence.

Musharraf is also on bail in other major cases linked to his time in power including the 2007 assassination of Benazir Bhutto, Lal Masjid and judges detention case.

Baloch leader Nawab Akbar Bugti was killed in an operation in Balochistan's rugged mountains of Taratani in Kohlu district on August 26, 2006.

Bugti had led an armed campaign to press for provincial autonomy and a greater share of profits from Balochistan’s natural resources.

The death of the Baloch chieftain had sparked angry protests in parts of the country.