In what has been described as “a moment of high drama and farce” Pervez Musharraf was forced to flee Islamabad’s High Court as an order was issued for his arrest.
It relates to his attempt to place judges under house arrest in March 2007 when he was Pakistan’s military ruler.
Outside the court, Musharraf supporters voiced their anger.
“Even though the judge has dismissed our appeal and he is biased, he gave the wrong decision, and now we have no faith in the judiciary and the judiciary have decided to put him in jail and we will see how they will do it,” said Muhammad Amjad, the secretary-general of the All Pakistan Muslim League party.
The house near Islamabad where the former General is staying was cordoned off by police, but there has been no attempt to detain him at the address.
Some commentators believe it is unlikely Musharraf will be arrested since the military would be unlikely to tolerate such a humiliating spectacle for its retired chief.
An appeal has been lodged against the arrest order at the Supreme Court .
General Musharraf recently returned to Pakistan from self-imposed exile to take part in next month’s general election, but the latest court action deals a fresh blow to his fast-fading hopes of reviving his political career.