The former self-exiled President of Pakistan General Musharraf has announced that he would return to Pakistan to return to politics in the next general elections to the National Assembly between March 16 to June 16 this year.
He said he would do so on the formation of interim government after the dissolution of the Assembly this month on March 16. He was Military Ruler after ousting the Government of Mr.Nawaz Sharif in a military take over in 1999, but later under political pressure he retired from Army and became civilian President and restored the democracy. But during the election campaign Mr.Benazir Bhutto was killed and after the polls her husband Asaf Ali Zardari took over as President.
Mr.Musharraf was suspect of complexity in the death of Benazir Bhutto by not providing adequate security to her. A case is going on against him with a warrant of arrest for not responding to court summons. He left the country to visit England and never returned to avoid arrest. Now on his declaration to return he said that he saw no reason for his arrest. He also said that he would seek the intervention of Saudi Arabian Government to ensure that he would not be arrested on his coming back. The Saudi Arabia has dominating political influence in Pakistan. When Mr.Nawaz Sharif was kept in jail by General Musharraf it was Saudi Government that asked him to release Nawaz and he was granted political asylum there. Later the Saudi Government also asked the Pakistan Government to let him return to the country.
Mr.Musharraf remained in England and Dubai. He clearly stated that he was returning to participate in Assembly Elections. The question of Presidency would come later. It was strange that during his self imposed exile he never visited Pakistan but in between came to India twice. He is the person charged with launching Kargil war against India without informing or taking permission from the Prime Minister Mr.Naraz Sharif. He has formed a faction of Muslim League there. The political situation is very fluid there deeply infested with terrorism.
Terrorist blasts are very frequent in Karachi, Baluchistan and border areas along Afghanistan. The ruling Pakistan Peoples Party of Bhutto-Zardari clan is facing the charges of corruption against President Zardari on the directive of the Federal Court of Pakistan and cases against him concerning hidden wealth in Swiss Banks are now reopened. Mr.Nazar Sharif may emerge as leader of single largest party. Musharraf will be backed by the Army. The Pakistan Army Chief General Kiyani is a choice and successor of General Musharraf.