Javed Hashmi is an opposition politician in Pakistan. He is the leader of the Alliance for the Restoration of Democracy which campaigns for the return on civilian democracy. He is also the leader of the PML-N (Pakistan Muslim League) which is loyal to former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif who was ousted in the 1999military coup by General Pervez Musharraf.
On 12 April2004 he was sentenced to 23 years in prison for inciting mutiny in the army, forgery and defamation. He had circulated a letter written by military officers calling for an investigation into alleged corruption in the armed forces and that criticised president Pervez Musharraf and his relationship with US president George W. Bush.
All opposition parties in Pakistan, including Pakistan People's Party of former PM Benazir Bhutto, 6 party-alliance MMA, call the above case to be politically motivated by the ruling junta, and entitle him to be a political prisioner.
JavedHashmi, president of the 15-party Alliance for Restoration of Democracy, was arrested for allegedly releasing an anonymous letter purportedly written by army officials criticising Pakistan President Gen Pervez Musharraf's leadership.
Hashmi, a firebrand leader of the Pakistan Muslim League (N), is a close lieutenant of deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
Hashmi had released the anonymous letter in the cafeteria of the parliament house on October 20 claiming to have received it from some men in uniform who did not want to be identified.
JavedHashmi's arrest on charges of sedition may be meant to serve as a warning to anyone planning to take on the army.
Hashmi's October 29 arrest on charges of sedition and incitement of disaffection within the armed forces of Pakistan, inevitably cast him in the mould of a victim of a system in which debating military matters is still taboo.
JavedHashmi should have known that reading before the press an anonymous letter to parliamentarians demanding the formation of a judicial commission to look into the Kargil conflict would not go unchallenged by the ruling generals.
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