Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Pakistan Army Act 1952, No right to appeal

The army men and civilians arrested for their alleged involvement in suicide attacks on Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf, the then president on Dec 14, 2003, at Jhanda Chichi Bridge in Rawalpindi and on Dec 25, 2003, in front of a petrol pump also near Jhanda Chichi,filed separate petitions before supreme court for legislation to give them right to appeal.

After in-camera hearing, the Field General Court Martial awarded death sentences in July 2005 to the ex-servicemen and civilians under the Army Act, 1952, which were later confirmed by the vice chief of the army staff.

The petitioners have appealed before the SC to recommend to the govt to legislate and amend the Army Act, 1952, Pakistan Air Force Act, 1953, and the Pakistan Naval Ordinance, 1961, to provide at least one opportunity of appeal against the verdict of the army tribunal, either before the Supreme Court or before an independent tribunal of any kind as was done by the Indian parliament in 2007 and as is in vouge in countries like the US, UK and Canada.

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