Messages of condolence have been appearing on the social media over the death of Gen Parvez Musharraf.
When I criticised this, some people commented that one should not criticise a dead person. By that logic one should not criticise people like Hitler, Mussolini, Gen Zia-ul-Haq, Idi Amin, and other tyrants and crooks, once they are dead.
As chief of the Pakistan army, Gen Musharraf started the Kargil war ( allegedly without the knowledge of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, ), in May, 1999, which lasted till July, causing many casualties on both sides.
He then took power by an illegal army coup in October,1999, imposed an emergency, and suspended the Pakistan Constitution. He issued the Judges Oath Order, 2000 requiring all Supreme Court and High Court judges to take an oath of loyalty to the army, sacking those who refused, thus ending the independence of the judiciary. He appointed himself as the President in 2001.
He sacked the then Chief Justice of Pakistan in 2007, but the agitation of lawyers, who were joined by the general public, made him flee the country in 2008 to avoid impeachment.
Later, he was charged under Article 6 of the Pakistan Constitution ( which declares suspending the Constitution a high treason ) and sentenced to death in 2019 by a special court, though that judgment was later annulled on a technicality by the High Court.
Musharraf started living in Dubai, where he died recently.
Some people say that Musharraf was not corrupt, but he admitted to the journalist Nadeem Malik of Samaa TV that he owns a lavish flat in London worth several million dollars, and another in Dubai ( one does not know what other properties he had ). Could he have amassed so much wealth on his army pay ?
In his interview he claimed that the money for these flats was given to him by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia after he remitted office, but that claim, as well as his claim that it was given to him as he was close to King Abdullah, has to be taken with a pinch of salt. So it is evident that Musharraf was not only a despot, but also corrupt.
And this is the man for whom many Pakistanis are weeping and wailing.