Hours after an anti-terrorism court remanded Pervez Musharraf to judicial custody, authorities on Saturday declared his sprawling farmhouse a "sub-jail" so that the former military ruler could be detained there.
The administration of Islamabad issued a formal notification declaring Musharraf's farmhouse in the suburb of Chak Shahzad a sub-jail on Saturday afternoon.
An assistant jail superintendent and some policemen will be posted at the residence so that they can keep an eye on Musharraf and monitor his visitors, sources said.
Musharraf, 69, will not be allowed out of the five-acre palatial farmhouse with high walls and guard towers. Visitors will be allowed to see Musharraf at specified times and only after they have been vetted by prison officials, the sources said.
While being held at the farmhouse, Musharraf will be allowed to retain the bodyguards provided to him by the army, sources said.
On Friday, Musharraf became the first former Pakistan army chief to be arrested and presented before a judge. The arrest came a day after Musharraf fled from the Islamabad high court when a judge revoked his bail and directed police to detain him for a case related to the sacking of judges during the 2007 emergency.
After being sent on transit remand by a judicial magistrate yesterday, Musharraf spent the night at the officers’ mess in the Islamabad Police headquarters. Under Pakistani rules, a person on transit remand must be held at a police station.
As officials were concerned about Musharraf's security, the police headquarters was declared a "temporary police station".
On Saturday morning, Musharraf was produced in an anti-terrorism court, which remanded him to judicial custody for a fortnight. The police were directed by Judge Kausar Abbas Zaidi to present Musharraf again on May 4.
Musharraf’s case was taken up by an anti-terrorism court as the Islamabad HC had directed police to charge him under the Anti-Terrorism Act for detaining over 60 judges during the 2007 emergency.
A notification was specially issued for setting up of the anti-terrorism court in Islamabad as the federal capital does not have such courts. The nearest anti-terrorism courts are in Rawalpindi.
Early on Saturday morning, a 15-foot section of the wall around Musharraf's farmhouse collapsed. A group of about 10 labourers were called in to immediately repair the wall.