ISLAMABAD - The Senate, which met for the 100th session on Friday with Chairman Syed Nayyar Hussain Bukhari, discussed former dictator Gen (Retd) Pervez Musharraf’s assertion of enjoying military support.

PPP Senator Farhatullah Babar on a point of order wanted to know factual position about assertion of former military ruler that he still enjoys army support. Senator Babar said the Inter-Service Public Relations’ silence over Musharraf’s assertion of enjoying military support suggests that the army was clandestinely backing the retired general’s claim. He had referred to a statement of Pervez Musharraf that the Army was embarrassed due to his trial. “We expect a statement from the government or the ISPR after these assertions by Pervez Musharraf.”

He claimed that such a statement by Pervez Musharraf that the trial was not against him but against the institution of the army had created doubts. “This needs to be explained,” he said and added that a clarification should have been issued by the ISPR.

However, Chairman Senate Nayyar Hussain Bukhari observed that Senator Babar could not issue such remarks while raising a point of order and ordered to switch off saying let the leader of the house respond to his point of order.

Responding to Senator Babar’s contention, Leader of the House in the Senate Raja Zafarul Haq said there was no need of a statement by ISPR on the proceedings of treason case against former dictator Gen (Retd) Pervez Musharraf. He said that Defence Minister Khawaja Asif had already issued a statement on this matter. “Therefore, it should not be expected that the ISPR should issue a separate statement. The ISPR is neither a separate department nor it is out of government’s ambit.”

He said Khawaja Asif had clearly stated that nobody should try to involve Army into the matter and “there is no need for any statement by the ISPR”. He requested the Chair to ‘set the issue at rest’. The House was adjourned till Monday.

Earlier, initiating discussion on the commenced motion on the current political and security situation in the country, ANP senior leader Senator Haji Adeel said the government was more concerned with the trial of the former military ruler and his security rather than focusing on talks with the Taliban. He asked the government to take serious steps for revival of peace and elimination of terrorism from the country.

He said tribal jirgas should be taken on board for return of peace to FATA and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He criticised Pakistan Tehreek-e- Insaf and Jamaat-e-Islami for blocking the NATO’s supply line, saying it has also adversely affected the Afghan transit trade. He said the blockade has hurt the trade and transport activities in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Meanwhile, Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly and Chairman PAC Khursheed Shah on Friday viewed that former President Pervez Musharraf’s trial can be done in a civil court over his action related to imposing emergency in the country.

Talking to media at the National Press Club, Shah said that had if Musharraf committed a military crime, he could have been tried be in a military court.

To a question, Shah said that PPP has never encouraged politics of confrontation. “There is a big difference between dictatorship and democracy as political leaders always think for people of the country,” he said adding that PPP had done many decisions for strengthening democracy in the country.

He further said that dictators never have thinking like of politicians to face the matter with courage. “This is the attitude which made Musharraf to prefer to go hospital rather than the court,” he added.

To a question about participation in the upcoming NA session, the opposition leader said that the opposition will take part in the NA session but if the government does not change its mode, then it will receive response in a same coin.

Shah was giving his reaction on the remarks of Interior Minister Ch Nisar during the last NA session.

When asked about MQM chief Altaf Hussain recent statement, Shah apparently dodged a question saying “Altaf Hussian could offend anyone as today he talked about Sindh. One should not mind his statement.”