KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) permitted former president Asif Ali Zardari to use bullet-proof vehicles with tinted glasses and keep private security on his own expense in view of looming threats by the Taliban. The former head of the state has however been instructed to inform the interior ministry about the number of vehicles, including guards and their weapons. The co-chairman of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) had approached Sindh High Court to seek permission to use bullet-proof vehicles and keep private security guards with licenced arms due to prevailing threats to his life and his children at the hands of Taliban militants and undemocratic forces.
Zardari had filed the petition through his attorney Abu Bakar Zardari, citing the federal interior ministry, home secretary and director general of Rangers Sindh as respondents. His lawyers, Farooq H Naek and Shazia Hanjrah, informed the court that the petitioner served as the eleventh president of the country and had successfully concluded the five year tenure of his office for the first time in Pakistan’s history.
During his tenure as president, Zardari being the commander-in-chief had presided over the successful military operation against the Taliban that even the military dictator before him failed to achieve, the attorney added.
The lawyers said Asif Zardari had left the presidency upon completion of his tenure on September 8. Now, he has to travel throughout the country to attend party’s affairs and address the public. There is great apprehension about his security as well as his family, the lawyers said, citing that the petitioner’s wife Benazir Bhutto, was assassinated in Rawalpindi on December 27, 2007, at a public gathering.