Jail trial of Musharraf ordered

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ISLAMABAD: On the request of the capital police, the city administration has ordered the jail trial of former president Pervez Musharraf in the murder case of a Lal Masjid cleric and his mother during the 2007 operation. The case was registered with the Aabpara police on September 2, 2013, sources in the police and administration said. They added that the request for the jail trial was made in view of threats to the former president. “According to the intelligence report, militant outfits have planned to assassinate the former president,” they added.

On April 23, a car loaded with 45 kilogrammes of explosive, was found near Musharraf’s farmhouse in Chak Shahzad which has been declared a sub-jail.

Meanwhile, sources in the police claimed that the Aabpara police on Tuesday refused to collect evidence and record the statements of witnesses against the former president in connection with the killing of the Lal Masjid cleric and his mother.

After the refusal of the Aabpara police, the Lal Masjid Shuhada Foundation and Haroon Rasheed, the complainant in the case, sent a letter to the inspector general of the police.

The sources said the complainant visited the Aabpara police station on Monday and Tuesday to hand over the evidence to SHO Qasim Niazi. However, the SHO was not available on both the occasions, they added.

In response, the complainant approached the investigating officer and other staff but they refused to entertain them.

Ihtesham Ahmed, a spokesman for Lal Masjid Shuhada Foundation, when contacted, claimed that the SHO and the investigating officer had deliberately refused to receive evidence and record their statement to give benefit to the former president.

“We have documents and proof against Musharraf to establish his guilt in the 2007 Lal Masjid operation and the killing of people, indulging Ghazi Abdul Rasheed and his mother Sabiha Khatoon.” He added: “We also wanted to give the list of witnesses who will give statements against Musharraf.”— Munawer Azeem