Musharraf, 76, was sentenced to death in absentia on Tuesday, after a three-judge panel found him guilty of treason for imposing a state of emergency and suspending the constitution in 2007.
The detailed 169-page judgement was released on Thursday, and immediately sparked controversy due to paragraph 66, buried deep in the text. Included by the president of the panel, Peshawar High Court Chief Justice Waqar Ahmad Seth, the paragraph states that if the ailing Musharraf passes away before being executed, his dead body “(should) be dragged to D-Chowk [a square outside the Pakistani parliament], Islamabad, Pakistan, and be hanged for three days.”
Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government, which indicated it would side with Musharraf’s lawyers in the looming appeal process, came out swinging after the text was released. Law Minister Farogh Naseem denounced the bizarre order as an “unprecedented and despicable observation by the judge.”
Naseem said that the government would take the issue to the Supreme Judicial Council and ask it to strip the judge of his authority, as it believes Seth is unfit to carry out his duties.
“If a judge gives such a judgment then such a judge is mentally unfit and incompetent.”
The order to parade Musharraf’s corpse has sent waves across Pakistan, drawing condemnation from the Pakistani legal community and netizens alike. Some legal experts argued that while the judgment might have been warranted, the all too specific hanging instructions have put the “historic” verdict in jeopardy, robbing it of its value.