Musharraf Verdict: Public outcry over judgement

Pervez Musharraf VerdictImage: YouTube Screenshot

“If found dead, his corpse [will] be dragged to the D-Chowk, Islamabad, Pakistan and be hanged for 03 days.” Those jarring words have triggered an outrage in Pakistan today as many people have taken to social media to speak out against such a harsh judgement against General Pervez Musharraf. The hashtag Musharraf Verdict (#MusharafVerdict) is trending on Twitter.

Musharraf sentenced to hang

The special court announced the verdict against Musharraf on Thursday. Two of the three judges on the bench handed down the death sentence, while one wrote a dissenting statement arguing that the prosecution wasn’t able to prove that he was guilty of treason.

The judgement against Musharraf was 169 pages in length, and it states that documents submitted in the case clearly indicate that the army general is guilty of treason. The judgement also states that he was given the chance to defend against the charges. The prosecution requested the maximum punishment in the case.

The judgement also included this controversial statement, which has divided the country:

“If found dead, his corpse [will] be dragged to the D-Chowk, Islamabad, Pakistan and be hanged for 03 days.”

Musharraf Verdict copy

An excerpt of detailed judgement received by ValueWalk.

The judgement orders law enforcement to apprehend Musharraf, so the punishment can be carried out. The judges ruled that he should be “hanged by his neck till he dies on each count as per charge.” The next paragraph states what should be done if he is found dead before capital punishment can be carried out:

“If found dead, his corpse [will] be dragged to the D-Chowk, Islamabad, Pakistan and be hanged for 03 days.”

Army speaks out in defense

Major General Asif Ghafoor, a spokesperson for the Pakistan Armed Forces, tweeted a statement in defense of Musharraf. He said the army received the judgement with a “lot of pain and anguish.” He also said that Musharraf “can surely never be a traitor” as he served Pakistan for more than 40 years and fought in defense of the country.

Further, he said due legal process “seems to have been ignored” and that they “expect that justice will be dispensed in line with [the] Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan.”

Musharraf Verdict hashtag is trending

The hashtag Musharraf Verdict (#MusharafVerdict) has been trending on Twitter for much of the day. Many social media users called for an investigation of the judges in the case. The general consensus was that such a harsh judgement has never been handed down in any other case, including those against terrorists and rapists.

The Musharraf Verdict (#MusharafVerdict) hashtag also highlighted the inhumane nature of hanging the army general even if he is found dead before capital punishment can be carried out. Some pointed out that it is against Islam to do such a thing.

Others questioned why they would fight and potentially die for Pakistan if a court can order their death and the public hanging of their body. Still others noted that it sounds as if the judges in the case are attempting to settle personal score in a disrespectful and vindictive way.

Pakistan Army’s DG ISPR video statement on Musharraf Verdict:

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About the Author

Michelle Jones
Michelle Jones was a television news producer for eight years. She produced the morning news programs for the NBC affiliates in Evansville, Indiana and Huntsville, Alabama and spent a short time at the CBS affiliate in Huntsville. She has experience as a writer and public relations expert for a wide variety of businesses. Michelle has been with ValueWalk since 2012 and is now our editor-in-chief. Email her at Mjones@valuewalk.com.