Lal Masjid action: IHC orders registration of case against Musharraf

ISLAMABAD: Islamabad High Court on Friday ordered police to register murder case against former president Pervez Musharraf in the killing of Ghazi Abdul Rasheed during 2007 military operation in Islamabad’s Lal Masjid, media reported.

A single bench comprising Justice Noorul Haq issued the order on a petition filed by Haroon Ur Rashid, the son of Ghazi Abdul Rasheed.

The complainant stated that Lal Masjid Commission report reveals that the operation was ordered by Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf, in which his father Ghazi Abdul Rasheed was killed.

During the hearing, Musharraf’s counsel Advocate Ilyas Siddiqui said that since Musharraf has served as a president of Pakistan and army chief, he therefore enjoys immunity in criminal case.

After hearing the arguments, the court ordered the police to record the statement of the applicant.

As the history revealed, on July 3, 2007, Musharraf had ordered a military operation against the mosque for challenging the writ of the state.

The military besieged the mosque for 12 days before assaulting the compound, an attack in which hundreds of students were killed.

The former chief cleric of Lal Masjid was accused of using the mosque loudspeaker to instigate madrassa students to attack the Rangers who were deployed outside the mosque in order to prevent Aziz and his associates at Lal Masjid from continuing their campaign of public intimidation that they had been carrying out since January of that year.

The charges against Aziz also include kidnapping and abduction of Chinese massage therapists as well as hijacking a children’s library in June 2007 as part of his institution’s protest against the demolition of seven mosques in the federal capital.

Last year, an anti-terrorism court acquitted Aziz, and 16 other persons in a case on the killing of a Rangers official.