islamabad - Former President General (Retd) Pervez Musharraf yesterday challenged the Islamabad District and Sessions Court’s 20th February order in the Islamabad High Court.

Additional District and Sessions Judge, Pervaiz ul Qadir Memon on February 20 had dismissed the former army chief’s application for granting permanent exemption from appearance in Lal Masjid case. The court had issued his non-bailable warrant and warned in case he would not appear on next hearing (March 16) his bail bonds would be forfeited.

The retired general filed the appeal in the IHC through his counsel and prayed to declare the district and sessions court’s order null and void.

The petition stated that Pervez Musharraf is seriously ill and, therefore, he could not appear before the court. It added that the medical report of former army chief was also submitted with the application, besides that the trial court had dismissed his application for permanent exemption. It has been further prayed to suspend the trial court’s 20th February order till the decision on appeal.

The sessions court had noted that Musharraf’s counsel has miserably failed to substantiate that the ex-military chief is ‘unable to move or not capable to travel for appearing before the trial court.’ It said: “Non-compliance of the orders of the High Court and this court shows the conduct of the accused (Musharraf) that he is bent upon not to appear before the trial court deliberately and intentionally to face the trial in person and is seeking justice while sitting in his drawing room.”

The court observed that the medical certificate and record produced do not show that the former commando cannot move or is not capable to travel.

The order further said: “The accused has to be physically present in the court and he must satisfy the court about his incapacity of remaining present.”