Musharraf amends Constitution to protect emergency rule, PCO

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Islamabad, Nov 22: President Pervez Musharraf has introduced a set of seven Constitutional amendments to give legal cover to his act of holding the Constitution in abeyance, imposing emergency rule and issuing the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO) on November 3. The amendments also empowered the Supreme Court (SC) to withdraw and dispose of any case pending before any High Courts (HC).

Similarly, superior courts judges who have taken oath under the PCO will also be considered to have taken oath under the Constitution and those who have not taken oath under the PCO will be considered to have ceased to hold their offices.

The amendments also provide for the establishment of a Federal High Court (FHC) for the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), bringing the total number of HCs in the country to five.

With the establishment of another HC, one of the amendments also seeks to increase the number of the members of the Election Commission (EC) from four to five, the Daily Times reported.

The order (to further amend the Constitution), issued by Musharraf, also protects all acts, orders, proceedings, appointments, endorsements, deputations, ordinances, enactments, amendments to the Constitution, notifications, laws and by-laws made on or after November 3 by the President and the Army Chief from being challenged in any court.

ANI>

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