Musharraf says he has not quit politics

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ISLAMABAD, June 23 (PTI): A day after resigning as the chairman of the All Pakistan Muslim League (APML), Pakistan’s former military ruler and dictator Pervez Musharraf on Saturday said he has not quit politics.

Musharraf, 74, on Friday sent his resignation as chairman of the APML party to the Election Commission of Pakistan, days after the Supreme Court barred him from contesting in the July 25 general elections.

The apex court had withdrawn an interim relief given to Musharraf to allow him to submit his nomination papers as he failed to appear before it.

In a video message, the Dubai-based former dictator said that many right and wrong statements were being spread regarding his resignation and reasons were being speculated, so he thought of putting forward the reality before the nation as people do not know the truth.

He said, he has full intention to contest the election, return Pakistan and appear before court in all cases, for which he had sought some assurances, which were not fulfilled, so he decided not to return to Pakistan.

Musharraf said he wanted overturning of his lifetime disqualification, removal of his name from the Exit Control List (ECL) and also he should not be arrested.

“I wanted my lifetime disqualification to be overturned as it happened with Khawaja Asif. If it can happen with him, why not me?” he was quoted as saying by the Dunya News.

“Then I asked my name to be removed from the ECL. If Nawaz Sharif has the freedom to move in and outside the country, why can I not have it?” he said.

“Thirdly, I do not want to get arrested. But the judgment was that I will not be held till my appearance in court. What will happen afterwards?” the former president asked.

Since those assurances were not given, Musharraf said he knew that he could not do anything for his party or for himself, therefore, after consultation with other APML leaders he decided not to return to the country.

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