`Question Musharraf in Benazir`s assassination probe`

Former ISI chief said Musharraf was responsible for Benazir Bhutto’s security.

Last Updated: Dec 27, 2010, 16:03 PM IST

Islamabad: Former Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf was responsible for former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto’s security and should be questioned by the investigators probing her assassination, former ISI chief Lieutenant General (retired) Hamid Gul has said.

According to him, it was the part of a deal, under which Musharraf stepped down, that he would not only be given safe exit, but would also be given honourable send off.

Gul believes that a government, which had failed to try him under Article 6 of the Constitution, could not be expected to proceed against him.

However, in the presence of all powerful and independent Supreme Court of Pakistan he saw no hurdle in the proceeding against Mushrraf, the Nation reports.

Gul’s comment comes after Pakistan’s Interior Ministry sent a questionnaire to Musharraf to record his statement as part of the assassination investigation.

“We have sent the questionnaire to General Musharraf and are waiting for his reply,” Special Public Prosecutor Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali, who is representing Federal Investigation Agency’s joint investigation team, said.

The joint investigation team had prepared a 32-point questionnaire for Musharraf.

Interior ministry sources revealed that the document contained questions relating to the security lapse, and asked the former president why he did not provide adequate security to Bhutto, even though she had expressed fears over threats to her life.

However, political observers are of the opinion that it would not by easy to include the former military ruler in the investigation because of his background.

A few months ago, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani had formed a three-member committee, headed by Cabinet Secretary Chaudhry Abdul Rauf, which excluded from inquiry some top military officials, who had allegedly ordered the hosing down of the assassination site. The inquiry report, however, has not been made public so far.

ANI