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Musharraf asks lawyers not to give "political twist" to judge issue
K J M Varma, Islamabad, May 13 (PTI) Amidst criticism of government's failure to stem violence in Karachi that left 36 people dead, Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has said the clashes were the fallout of "politicising" the issue of suspension of Chief Justice Iftikhar M Chaudhry and urged lawyers to let the Supreme Court decide on it.

Addressing a mammoth public rally in front of Parliament here last night, Musharraf said he held the judiciary in high esteem and would accept the verdict of the apex court on the suspension of Chaudhry.

"The lawyers should not give the matter a political twist. Stop this protest and reject those who are politicising the issue," he said and asked the lawyers community to let the courts resolve it legally with complete freedom.

"If they (lawyers) were equally hurt by the incidents in Karachi and the loss of life and property, they should stop the protests.

"My heart bled at the site of happenings in Karachi; it was horrible to see the sufferings of the people; this is no way of seeking freedom for the judiciary... Stop politicising and let the judiciary do justice," Musharraf told the rally organised by the ruling coalition to counter Chaudhry's visit to Karachi yesterday to address a lawyers' convention.

He also briefly spoke about his plans to get re-elected as President followed by the general elections later this year which he promised to hold in a free and fair manner and according to the Constitution and rules.

Musharraf appealed to people to vote for the moderate forces backed by him. "If you want the continuity of policies, vote for the people who are with me."

Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
FILED IN: |Pakistan
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