LAHORE - The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday directed the federal government to submit complete record of the high treason case against former president Pervez Musharraf till December 3 in which a special court had reserved its verdict.

A single bench, consisting of Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, adjourned the hearing of a petition filed by the former military ruler, challenging the verdict reserved by the special court in the case against him and seeking suspension of his trial in absentia.

During the hearing, Justice Naqvi addressed Musharraf’s counsel Azhar Siddique and remarked that the Islamabad High Court (IHC) had given relief to his client.

The court reminded that the IHC had not only granted a stay order in the case, but also ordered that fair trial be ensured. The counsel submitted that the present petition was a bit different, and read out the order passed by the IHC in the similar case.

He informed the court that the IHC had passed the orders on a petition filed by the government.

He argued that the special court was established without seeking permission from the cabinet. Furthermore, he questioned that how could a case against his client fall in the category of a high treason.

The court asked the federal law officer to assist the court on this point at the next date of hearing.

Subsequently, the court adjourned further hearing till December 3, and sought the case record from the federal government.

On November 19, the special court had concluded the trial proceedings against Musharraf for declaring a state of emergency on November 3, 2007.

The special court had ruled that a verdict would be announced on November 28 on the basis of available record.

It is pertinent to mention here that IHC had allowed the plea, filed by the interior ministry on Wednesday (Nov 27), and stayed the special court from announcement of the decision.

The IHC issued the order which says, “For reasons to be recorded later, we allow writ petition [...] filed by the Ministry of Interior”.

The order reads, “The learned special court is expected to conclude the proceedings expeditiously having [regard] to the cardinal principles of fair trial.”