Musharraf charge sheet: Where is the follow-up?
Recently, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) issued a charge sheet against former president Pervez Musharraf – well done! The seven-page charge-sheet contains 17 allegations including the Kargil misadventure, Musharraf’s use of the army for personal reasons, declaring war against Pakistanis, blackmailing through NAB, alleged assassination of Nawab Akbar Bugti and the disappearance of people and conspiracy in Balochistan. The document also termed Musharraf a “corrupt, callous, immoral and ruthless ruler.”
Moreover, PML-N demanded that the government take necessary measures to bring back the former president through Interpol and ensure his trial under Article 6 of the Constitution for acts of high treason.
The question really is: is it possible to charge Musharraf based on these allegations?
So far, The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), a coalition partner with PML-N in the largest province of the country has not shown any reaction to the charge sheet.
Giving a comical statement at a press conference in London, former president General (r) Pervez Musharraf said:
“I acknowledge that during the last years of my regime, there were some decisions, which I can term as political mistakes,… I promise not to commit them again. I start my political career with clean slate.”
However, a notable point is that the former president is still not comfortable about giving a possible date for his return to Pakistan. Musharraf does not seem to have street support in the country (judging by the absence of his party’s visibility in other provinces). Will the PML-N be able to change public opinion through this charge sheet? In any case, I fail to understand why PML-N is scared of Musharraf’s return to Pakistan?
Our international friends are adding a cherry on this cake. On the one hand, some are ignoring Pervez Musharraf’s return to politics, while others are doing the opposite. Statements such as a recent one made by Richard Holbrooke “Musharraf comes back and wins a democratic election? Fine. But as I indicated earlier, the chances of that are very slim.” breaks the hearts of those who joined Musharraf’s All Pakistan Muslim League. On the other hand, it gives me the assurance that a military ruler of the past is not going to take over as a politician.
The question is: should Holbrooke be the one giving us this assurance, or should it be up to our political leaders to develop our faith in the democratic system?
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.