Why is the president immune from prosecution in Pakistan?

According to a news item, the most popular lawyer Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan reportedly said that the president would have protection under the “principle of sovereign immunity” and that no court could summon him. This is truly amazing. I thought all laws in the Islamic Republic were supposed to be in conformity with Islam (according to which all citizens are equal and no one is superior to the rest), so why has the president been granted immunity?

I’m reminded of the second Khalifa (Hazrat Umar, R.A.) who was openly questioned in the mosque to explain why he was wearing a robe made of a bigger cloth than was allotted to him. If an ordinary man could thus confront the ruler of a much larger country than Pakistan, why is one particular individual granted immunity from being summoned by the courts? If the president of a country can commit a crime and not be punished for it, shouldn’t all citizens be exempted from prosecution as well?

I remember Richard Nixon saying, “If the president did it, it’s not illegal”, but he had to pay dearly for his mistakes. He became the only U.S. president to resign to avoid impeachment, but in Pakistan’s case, impeachment is out of the question (since most parliamentarians are crooks). How can a citizen be proud of his country if its leaders are dishonest?


17 thoughts on “Why is the president immune from prosecution in Pakistan?”

  1. @murtaza
    u mean dat media shud start d policy of “compromising” in d same way dat we c our politicians nd dere parliment…………daniel pearl was onto sumthing……without notifying our authorities and so his end had nuthing to do wid d foundations or outlook of pakistan……….it was unfortunate bt he crossd d line of security himself nd we in pakistan were equally sad by his demise………..nd still its great to knw dat his father works for interfaith dialogue………
    d black or white water was exposed in my view a bit casually…………wen we hav d proves dat they hav established fortified castles out here r we waiting for another east india company…………..
    media has to b on d front foot in situation like these

  2. @ Hamid

    My point is regarding how the media tends to make news which sells. The media should be careful on how and who they report. The recent remarks about Mathew Rosenberg of Wall Street Journal to be working for Blackwater undercover could lead to another incident to that of Daniel Peal which everyone knows was not a good ending and very sad from Pakistan’s point of view also.

  3. The NRO and Zardari issue seems to be not fading away as it is still much discussed by the electronic media. The media should now better shift focus on the real issues at hand, like the constant tragic suicide bomb blasts in Peshawar.

  4. @murtaza
    media only shows whats happening outside……………nd if it waznt media frm interior ministry u wud hav been hearing dat instead of suiciders dey were infact fire crackers played to celebrate the president 1 year in office…………….
    gillani foundation forgot to mention that media has landed in the hot water as they have decided to flow against the tide…..
    nd in dis case words like irresponsible…non patriot bla bla are assigned to a segment…………..
    u can be driven out of this mess by a sincere and capable leadership………….if president acquieres this neither media nor any1 will have a problem

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