A board of senior doctors submitted Musharraf's medical report on Friday to the special court trying him for high treason.
The medical report by a board of senior doctors at the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology(AFIC) on the health condition of
former President General(retd) Pervez Musharraf indicates that he wants to choose where he will be treated and is not satisfied with facilities in Pakistan.
The report submitted to the special court on Friday, said the patient has expressed his keenness to undergo coronary angiography. However, he has reserved his right to undergo this or any subsequent intervention at the medical facility of his choice.
Though adequate facility for coronary disease management exist in Pakistan, he (Musharraf) feels there is a paucity of advance cardiac support systems available in the country, like left ventricular assist devices, required to save the patient's life in the event of sudden, severe heart failure, the report said.
At the last hearing, the defence had submitted a letter from Dr. Arjumand Hashmi , director of interventional cardiology, Paris
Regional Medical Center, Paris, in Texas, USA, which said Musharraf was suffering from coronary artery disease which can result in a heart attack if left untreated. He had also urged that he be transferred to the US for treatment. Musharraf was admitted to AFIC on January 2 and a medical report was already submitted to the court detailing his health condition on January 7.
Today’s report said a coronary angiogram is required urgently to ascertain the need for further interventions like coronary artery bypass graft surgery. The seriousness and unpredictability of the disease warrant close and constant supervision of the patient till a decision to undertake further procedures is taken. The decision in this regard needs to be taken as early as possible, the report said.
The special court trying Musharraf for high treason had ordered the fresh medical report after Musharraf failed to appear despite three summonses. On January 16, Justice Faisal Arab had asked the board to give its opinion on how precarious Musharraf’s health condition was which restricts his movements and prevents him from attending court.
The court also asked the board to state how long he has been advised further hospitalization and if he had undergone any surgery or other medical procedure during his stay. or if any procedure was planned.
Special public prosecutor Akram Sheikh said he had no faith in this report and demanded the setting up of an independent medical board comprising top cardiologists from five major hospitals to decide on Musharraf’s medical condition. He said he would file written objections to the report which indicated that Musharraf wanted to go abroad and did not want to be treated by the military doctors. Mr. Sheikh submitted that the former dictator did not trust Pakistani medical facilities. If this report was acted upon, all those in prison suffering from cardiac ailments would have to be released, he remarked. He said the accused was hale and hearty.
After this Akhtar Shah, a lawyer and supporter of Musharraf who is not part of the defence team, shouted at the prosecution and threatened to break the limbs of all those who opposed Pakistan and the army. Earlier during the break, Mr. Sheikh had accused the defence team of threatening him. Finally Justice Arab had to intervene and say that this was a court and not an arena and he told Mr. Shah not to create a scene. He said such actions made a mockery of the Pakistan judicial system.
Senior defence counsel Sharifuddin Pirzada said he took strong exception to Mr. Sheikh’s objections to AFIC and said the report was a candid opinion on his client’s health. The matter will now be heard of Wednesday. However, talking to the media outside the court, Ikram Choudhary from the prosecution said there is no apparent reason given for Musharraf not to come to court and he was leading a normal life in hospital. He was no longer in intensive care unit. The report also did not give any specific responses and was almost a replica of the earlier report, he said. The report was more a reflection of Musharraf’s personal wishes, he added.