NEW DELHI: He's the Chief Justice who hit the streets of Pakistan four years ago demanding justice. His crime - suspicion that he and other judges were preparing to unseat then military leader General Pervez Musharraf. Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhary and other judges suffered dismissal, violence and jail. But he went on to lead an agitation by lawyers that eventually unseated Musharraf. Yet although victimised by the army, Chief Justice Chaudhary's actions appear to benefit only the army. He has spent months trying to reopen graft cases against Zardari. Cases accusing President Zardari of profiting from presidentship of the PPP were admitted. The president was barred from giving pardon to those convicted of blasphemy. He's been strangely reluctant to probe cases of missing persons involving the army. Nor the ISI chief's role in canvassing support abroad for a coup last year. His claim of commitment to the core values of democracy are suspected. In 2005, he accepted Musharraf's offer of a seat in the Supreme Court thereby endorsing his 1999 coup against Nawaz Sharif. So is Chaudhary also wearing a mask like every other actor on Pakistan's political stage. Is he currying favour with the men in uniform even if they victimised him not very long ago?
- Altamash Hashmi