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Home / International News / 2007 / May 2007 / May 12, 2007
Rising violence in Karachi leads suspended Pak CJ to head for Islamabad (lead: Karachi)
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General Pervez Musharraf

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Rising violence in Karachi leads suspended Pak CJ to head for Islamabad (lead: Karachi)

Suspended Pakistan Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry today headed for Islamabad without addressing the Sindh High Court and the Sindh Bar Association in Karachi on the occasion of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the apex court, as violence escalated in the city.

Karachi, May 12 : Suspended Pakistan Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry today headed for Islamabad without addressing the Sindh High Court and the Sindh Bar Association in Karachi on the occasion of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the apex court, as violence escalated in the city.

As per the latest report, the death toll in the clashes between the supporters of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf and Justice Chaudhry reached 27and 115 others were injured.

The violence that began with incidents of stray gun firing on late Friday evening today engulfed the whole city. During the day, violent mob torched the parking station of a news channel and all the roads in the city were blocked.

Sindh Governor Ishrat-ul-Ebad asked the Pakistan Government to deploy the Army in Karachi in the wake of violence and around 25000 soldiers began patrolling the city.

Meanwhile, The News reported that Justice Chaudhry had to leave Karachi, as he feared that the federal government might arrest his lawyer Munir A Malik.

Earlier, the Sindh Interior Ministry had ordered 25 lawyers accompanying Chief Justice Chaudhry to leave the province in order to control the law and order situation.

Sindh High Court was also reportedly asked to suspend the scheduled programme of Justice Chaudhry in view of the prevailing crisis in the city.

On the other hand, Munir A Malik had earlier refuted such deportation notice and had said that the government has no authority to direct the Chief Justice to leave.

Ebad, who had urged for army deployment, had also urged the federal government to send Chief Justice Chaudhry back to Islamabad immediately in view of the 'tense situation.'

The Governor's plea came minutes after President Musharraf called an emergency meeting in Islamabad to assess the situation in Karachi.

Musharraf has blamed Chief Justice Chaudhry of politicising the decision of the Presidential reference against him.

The Advisor to the Chief Minister for Home Affairs of Sindh Province, Waseem Akhtar blamed Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry for the violence in the city and accused him of politicising the issue.

Meanwhile in Rawalpindi, Musharraf ruled out imposing an emergency in the country in the wake of the current political scenario.

"There is no need for a declaration of emergency as the country is not passing through such conditions that would force us to take such a hard decision," he said, while addressing the inaugural ceremony of a power plant in Rawalpindi.

He said that Chaudhry should not politicise the March 9 presidential reference filed against him.

The Alliance for the Restoration of Democracy (ARD) has announced to observe Sunday as a 'Black Day' in protest against the killings in Karachi over Chief Justice Chaudhry's arrival and rallies held by political parties.

ARD Chairman Makhdoom Amin Fahim said the Presidents of the coalition would hold a meeting on Sunday to decide future strategy on the situation.

ANI

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