The Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP) has been asked through a petition to intervene in Musharaf’s trial for high treason that has been stalled. The petition filed by a former president of the Lahore High Court Bar Association, Taufiq Asif, and Shiekh Ehsanuddin wants the apex court to exert pressure on the special court where the case has yet to be decided as the former general is abroad. The tone of the members of the SC bench suggests that the case can take interesting turns.

Many believe that the reason behind commando’s stay abroad is a tactic to delay justice and hamper the proceedings of the court in the case of treason against him. However, the apex court’s reference to the Section 9 of the Criminal Law (Special Court) Act 1976 shows that the apex court wants the special court to not wait for the general’s appearance before it anymore. The latest opinion of the bench members has put the former president in a troubling situation as the SCP has already issued an order to the special court to proceed with the trial on the next date of hearing.

SCP understands it clearly that the case has been delayed long enough. We all know well that Musharaf, proclaimed offender, does not wish to return to face the court. Therefore, there is no reason for the special court to not proceed with the trial. The case against Musharaf should be tried in his absence. It is the most suitable time for the judiciary to decide this case, especially when the “across the board accountability” narrative is sweeping the nation.

Furthermore, it is important to decide the case as soon as possible for two reasons. First, the long-delayed proceedings show the inefficiency of the justice system of the country and the loopholes that any person can use to his/her benefits. Second, the special court has to erase the vox populi that the laws are made only for the poor while the wealthy and influential individuals can get away with it.

 Moreover, the highest court has already made it easy for the special court what direction to take in the high treason case against Musharaf. There is now no reason left with the special court not to proceed against the former president. The apex court has already helped the special court to reach a logical end. Now the responsibility lies with the special court to decide the fate of the former dictator.