DUBAI: Former president retired General Pervez Musharraf passed away in Dubai on Sunday after a prolonged battle with the rare disease amyloidosis. He was 79.
Shazia Siraj, spokesperson for Pakistan’s consulate in Dubai and embassy in Abu Dhabi, confirmed the news. “I can confirm that he passed away this morning,” she told Reuters.
The former military ruler was hospitalized for three weeks in June last year. “Going through a difficult stage where recovery is not possible and organs are malfunctioning. Pray for ease in his daily living,” his family said at the time in a statement via Musharraf’s official Twitter account.
The family had issued the statement after the news of his demise had started circulating on social media after some Pakistani and Indian publications carried it.
The retired general’s illness came to light in 2018 when the All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) had announced that he was suffering from the rare disease amyloidosis.
Amyloidosis is the name for a group of rare, serious conditions caused by a build-up of an abnormal protein called amyloid in organs and tissues throughout the body. The build-up of amyloid proteins (deposits) can make it difficult for the organs and tissues to work properly.
The party’s Overseas President Afzaal Siddiqui had said that Musharraf’s condition had “weakened his nervous system”. At the time he was being treated in London.
On March 30, 2014, Musharraf was indicted for suspending the Constitution on November 3, 2007. On December 17, 2019, a special court handed Musharraf death sentence in the high treason case against him. The former military ruler left the country in March 2016 for Dubai to seek medical treatment and didn’t return to Pakistan since.
Friend of Chitral
Chitralis consider the military dictator as their friend and benefactor because of a number of steps he took that put a long-lasting impact on their life, the most crucial of them being the start of work on the construction of the Lowari tunnel.
During his tenure, he visited Chitral many times and also attended the annual Shandur and other festivals. On these visits, he announced a number of development projects such as the Shandur road and the construction of Mastuj bridge winning the eharts of most of the inhabitants. The people of Chitral voted for Musharraf in the 2013 general elections though he could not visit the area for electioneering.
In the 2018 elections, Musharraf’s All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) also contested from NA-1 Chitral but its candidate Dr Amjad from Islamabad lost the polls to the MMA candidate. This was mainly because of the award of party ticket to the outsider and Musharraf’s decision to resign from the post of chairman of his All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) just before the polls.
Most of the people of Chitral still continue admiring Musharraf not only for launching the mega projects but also for cherishing their values and patriotism in and outside the country. They also supported Musharraf when most of the country was after him and he was charged with treason. Musharraf is the second person after former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto to be considered as a benefactor of the people of Chitral.
(Former DEO Chitral Sherdil Aman on Musharraf’s death).
3 Replies to “Musharraf – a benefactor of Chitral”
Rest in peace Musharraf sahib. He did for Chitral what corrupt and hypocrite politicians failed to do in the past 75 years. If Mush was not there, we chitralis would now be dying and being humiliated by Afghans on Kunar Nawa pass road every winter. Chitralis should not forget their past condition (halat).
Musharraf was a dictator and sold country’s vital interests and was convicted of treason. He fled fled the country and never dared to return.
May Allah forgive him, but the fact is, Musharraf was a selfish dictator who sold the country’s sovereignity in his 9 year unhindered reign. He accepted two billion rupees as a personal gift from saudi King for selling Pakistan’s foreign policy. His ‘love’ for Chitralis and initiating Lowari tunnel was more driven by his desire to make Chitral his electoral constituency which he tried but was disqualified from contesting elections, after which he lost interest in Chitral. He was at best ‘more of the same’ like all other Pakistani rulers.