Pakistan`s apex court maintains foreign travel ban on Musharraf

Pakistan`s Supreme Court Monday suspended a lower court`s order allowing former president Pervez Musharraf to go abroad, lawyers said.

IANS| Last Updated: Jun 23, 2014, 20:17 PM IST

Islamabad: Pakistan`s Supreme Court Monday suspended a lower court`s order allowing former president Pervez Musharraf to go abroad, lawyers said.

The Sindh High Court had earlier cancelled the government`s travel ban on Pervez Musharraf, Xinhua reported.

The federal government challenged in the Supreme Court the verdict delivered by the Sindh High Court on Musharraf`s petition.

Musharraf, who faces high treason trial for abrogating the constitution and some other criminal cases, had pleaded to go abroad for his own treatment and to look after his ailing mother in the United Arab Emirates.

Speculations about Musharraf possibly leaving the country had gripped Pakistan after the high court lifted the travel curbs on him. However, Monday`s apex court order has dashed the former army strongman`s hopes at least for the time being.

A five-member bench of the apex court accepted the government`s petition against the high court verdict and adjourned the hearing for four weeks.

The government has barred Musharraf from leaving the country on the plea that he would not return to the country as he currently faces high treason and several other criminal cases.

Musharraf`s defence lawyers insisted that the government had no substantial grounds to bar their client from going abroad and that he wants to get medical treatment abroad and to look after his ailing mother in the UAE.

During the months of legal battle, the government`s lawyers had opposed removal of Musharraf`s name from the Exit Control List and insisted that the former president can get medical treatment in the country. The government had also offered to bring Musharraf`s ailing mother to the country.

The Supreme Court had earlier rejected Musharraf`s appeal against travel restrictions and argued that the government can take a decision on the issue.

Musharraf, a former army chief, had dismissed the previous government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in 1999 and ruled the country as the chief executive and the president until 2008. He had gone into exile since then and returned to the country in 2013 to take part in parliamentary elections. However, he was disqualified by the court.