Islamabad - A local court Tuesday turned down an application of former military dictator General (Retd) Pervez Musharraf seeking exemption from his appearance before the court in a murder case of former prayer leader of Lal Masjid Abdul Rasheed Ghazi and his mother Sahiba Khatoon.

After rejecting his plea, Additional District and Sessions Judge Wajid Ali Khan summoned Musharraf to appear before the court on November 8.

Wajihullah Advocate and Malik Abdul Haq Advocate appeared before the court on the behalf of plaintiff Haroon Rashid Ghazi while Major (Retd) Akhtar Shah represented the former president in this case.

Despite court’s earlier orders, Musharraf did not appear before the court. However, his two guarantors were present in the court.

During the hearing, Musharraf’s counsel submitted an application seeking exemption for his client and contended that former president could not appear before the court due to two reasons. Narrating the reasons, he stated that first reason is that doctors had not allowed him to travel and second reason is severe security threats to his life.

He maintained that Musharraf would come immediately if doctors permitted him to travel and the government took appropriate measures to provide security to his client.

Musharraf’s counsel adopted before the court that insistence on the appearance of his client was being made to kill him.

He also submitted before the court Musharraf’s medical report which was prepared by five doctors of Aga Khan Hospital Karachi and contended that his client could not appear before the court due to illness and security concerns.

The counsel stated that interior ministry had already expressed its apprehension regarding the terror incident in the sit-ins of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Awami Tehrik (PAT) and terrorists had also targeted the F-8 district courts.

Therefore, he was of the view that the same place is not safer for the appearance of former president before the court.

The counsel for plaintiff Abdul Haq strongly opposed the application seeking exemption and raised objections over his medial report. Wajihullah contended that all are equal before the law and no accused could be granted exemption from appearing before the court only for pain in his back.

After hearing arguments of both the sides, the court rejected Musharraf’s medical report as well as his application seeking exemption from appearance before the court for one day.

The court also directed Musharraf along with his guarantors to appear before the court on November 8 and deferred the hearing. The court warned Musharraf’s guarantors of legal action against them if they failed to produce Musharraf before the court.

Earlier, the court had summoned former military ruler for 18 times but he did not turn up even a single time. Now, the court will take up this matter again on November 8 for further proceedings in this regard.