SHC asked to dismiss Musharraf plea for removing his name from ECL

KARACHI: Federal government has pleaded the Sindh High Court (SHC) to dismiss an application filed by retired Gen Pervez Musharraf for removal of his name form Exit Control List (ECL) as it was non-maintainable.

Deputy attorney general (DAG) Muhammad Zahid Khan filed comments on Friday on behalf of interior ministry in the court office after the SHC division bench, which was hearing application of former president, directed him to submit reply of ministry during course of day in the court office.

In comments, DAG submitted that name of former army chief had been put on ECL by interior ministry after fulfilling all legal requirements. He said that application was filed by unauthorized person as affidavit attached to the application was filed by brother-in-law of Musharraf but he has not attached any power of attorney to show that he was authorized to act on behalf of Musharraf.

He said that earlier SHC had restrained Musharraf from leaving the country without permission of trial courts but in the application he has not mentioned whether or not he approached the trial courts for permission to leave the country.

He stated that applicant has not discussed the grounds for seeking modification of court’s earlier order. Hence, he requested the court to dismiss the application as it was non maintainable.

Earlier, a division bench of SHC, headed by Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, heard an application of former army chief in the chamber and adjourned the hearing of case to November 25 after DAG requested the court that he would be allowed to file comments in the court’s office during course of day.

Musharraf has moved the court seeking to modify its earlier order, restraining him from leaving country without permission of trial courts.

Applicant’s counsel AQ Halepota had submitted before the court that on March 29, 2013, Musharraf appeared before the court for getting transitory bail and it extended his bail for 21 days with the condition that the applicant, Gen Pervez Musharraf, would not leave the country without permission from the trial courts.

AQ Halepota submitted that trial courts had confirmed Musharraf’s bail in all cases, including assassination of Benazir Bhutto, Killing of Nawab Akbar Bugti and murder of Lal Masjid cleric Ghazi Abdul Rasheed during the army operation on the mosque in 2007.

He said that Musharraf wanted to leave for Dubai to enquire the health of his 95-year-old mother who is seriously ill in Dubai and enable to travel Pakistan. He stated that it was uppermost desire of Musharraf to be with his mother after he had been released on bail in cases against him.

Halepota said that following the court orders Musharraf’s name was placed on ECL, adding that placing the name of former general on ECL was violation of fundamental rights, therefore, he pleaded to the court to modify its earlier order regarding putting his clients name on ECL.