New Delhi: Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf's legal team was unable to file an appeal in the supreme court against an order for his arrest as lawyers were unable to complete certain formalities before the court closed for the day.
Musharraf's lawyers Ibrahim Satti and Kamar Afzal went to the apex court to file the appeal but could not complete some formalities before the court closed for the day.
They told the media that they would contend in the appeal that the charge against Musharraf — the wrongful confinement of judges during the 2007 emergency — was a bailable offence.
The lawyers further said that none of the judges allegedly affected by Musharraf's actions had complained and the FIR was filed by a private individual.
Earlier in the day, the Islamabad high court revoked Musharraf's bail in a case over the detention of more than 60 judges during the emergency and directed police to arrest him.
Musharraf, 69, who appeared in the court on Thursday morning to seek extension of his interim bail, was whisked away by his bodyguards, all commandos, before the police could take him into custody following the court order.
Rejecting his plea seeking extension of bail, Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui ordered police to arrest him immediately.
Even as police tried to reach the former president, his bodyguards rushed him out of the courtroom to his black SUV. Musharraf's motorcade then drove out of the court complex before police could act.
A large contingent of police and paramilitary personnel deployed at the complex to provide security to Musharraf also did not act as the former dictator's security team of army commandos escorted him out of the courtroom.
Musharraf's convoy drove from the court to his farmhouse at Chak Shahzad on the outskirts of Islamabad, television channels reported.
As the former military ruler's arrest appeared imminent, Mohammad Amjad, a senior leader of his All Pakistan Muslim League party, said a team of legal experts was examining the court's order.
Amjad said Musharraf will act according to the law and if the legal experts deemed it necessary, he would surrender to the authorities.
Soon after Musharraf returned to his farmhouse, a contingent of Pakistan Rangers personnel deployed to protect him left the residence. Some analysts contended this was a sign that the security establishment would not back Musharraf.
Sources told PTI that the government was considering a proposal to declare Musharraf's farmhouse a "sub-jail" so that he could be detained at his residence. Authorities believe it would be better to hold Musharraf at his farmhouse in view of serious threats to his life, the sources said.
Last week, Musharraf was granted interim bail for six days after he surrendered to the Islamabad high court in connection with the case over the detention of judges in 2007. The same court had earlier declared him a "proclaimed offender" or fugitive in the case.
During Thursday's hearing, deputy attorney general Tariq Mehmood Jahangir told the court that Musharraf had been granted interim bail on the condition that he would cooperate with police officials investigating the case.
Justice Siddiqui remarked that Musharraf had been accused of destroying the judicial system and he was bound to cooperate in the investigation. The judge was then told by the investigating officer that Musharraf had not come to the police station or cooperated with the probe.
The investigating officer further said Musharraf had sent a message that he would say whatever he had to say in court.
The case against Musharraf is based on an FIR filed in August 2009 by a lawyer named Chaudhry Mohammad Aslam Ghumman.
Ghumman had asked police to initiate proceedings against Musharraf for detaining over 60 judges, including supreme court Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry, after imposing emergency on November 3, 2007.
Since Musharraf returned to Pakistan last month after nearly four years in self-exile, he has been in and out of court several times to get his bail extended over the 2007 killing of former premier Benazir Bhutto, the death of a Baloch leader Akbar Bugti in a 2006 military operation and for imposing emergency rule in 2007.
The Taliban have also threatened to target him. Earlier this week, Musharraf was disqualified from contesting next month's general election, effectively ending his ambitions for a political comeback.