Lahore: Former President Pervez Musharraf has said that he plans to return to Pakistan in January, two months ahead of what he had announced previously, as a confrontation appears brewing between the army and the government over the memogate affair.

Musharraf, facing summons from courts in the country, made his intentions known while addressing his All Pakistan Muslim League party workers through video conferencing from London.

The former military ruler said he would be back in the country next month. He had earlier said he planned to return in March.

Though Musharraf did not give any reason for advancing the date of his return, a party spokesman said the current political situation had prompted him to make plans to come back next month to take "active part in politics".

An anti-terrorism court has declared Musharraf a "proclaimed offender" or fugitive for failing to cooperate with investigators probing the assassination of former premier Benazir Bhutto.

Musharraf has been living outside Pakistan since early 2009. Punjab Governor Latif Khosa recently said Musharraf would be arrested on his return.

Musharraf told the meeting held at Nasser Bagh in Lahore last night that Pakistan needed a change but involving the army in politics would not help solve the problems of the people.

Dragging the military into politics would be fatal for the country, he warned.

He praised the army and the Inter-Services Intelligence, saying they were "guarantors" of Pakistan's solidarity and sovereignty.

Some elements were using the Memogate scandal to hatch conspiracies to defame the ISI and security forces, Musharraf said.

"The enemies know they can weaken Pakistan only by weakening the army and ISI and it is very unfortunate that some people are doing this dirty work at the behest of foreign powers," he claimed.

Endorsing the demand of cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan, Musharraf said all politicians should disclose their assets.

"I led Pakistan towards prosperity and stabilised the economy during my regime. I also improved the image of the country worldwide. I will soon be among my countrymen. Those making all kinds of allegations against me will be unable to prove a single allegation of corruption against me," he said.

He said it was regrettable that state institutions were in a state of constant confrontation while President Asif Ali Zardari was out of country in "mysterious circumstances", as no one knew whether he was suffering from some "physical, mental or political illness".

Zardari had abruptly left Pakistan for Dubai on December 6 to seek treatment for a heart condition and he returned to the country early on Monday morning.

(Agencies)