Pakistan’s former army chief Pervez Musharraf dies aged 79
Image by AAMIR QURESHI/AFP/Getty Images
Pakistan’s former military dictator Pervez Musharraf died on 5 February after a prolonged illness at the American Hospital in Dubai.
Musharraf, who overthrew the previously elected government through a military coup in 1999, was the subject of several controversies. He was the key official to have given a green light to the Kargil War between India and Pakistan, and survived numerous assassination attempts.
He also found himself on the front line of the struggle between militant Islamists and the West. The former army chief was 79 years old when he died. He is reported to have amassed a lot of wealth and deposited billions of rupees in overseas banks through money laundering.
His assets were worth 62 crore Pakistani Rupees, according to an affidavit given by him to the Election Commission. Musharraf fled to Dubai in 2008 after being forced to resign as the president and announced elections after being under mounting domestic and international pressure.
He attempted to reclaim his power in politics in the next few years by returning to Pakistan, but failed as he was embroiled in several court cases.
In 2019, he was found guilty of high treason, for imposing a state of emergency on November 3, 2007 by temporarily suspending Pakistan’s constitution. For this, he was given a death sentence in absentia by a special court.
However, after much anger expressed by the Army, the death sentence was reversed by the Lahore High Court.
However, he was also considered to be a fugitive in high profile cases including the Benazir Bhutto murder case and Red Mosque cleric killing case. He had been living in Dubai since 2016 and did not come back to the country.