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Pakistan Top Stories

Profile of Lt General Qamar Bajwa- likely-to-be next Army Chief?

Present Pakistan Army Chief General Raheel Sharif is set to retire on November 29, and if nothing dramatic happens, Lieutenant General Lieutenant General Qamar Javed Bajwa is n w the strongest contenders to be the next Army Chief.

Whereas, the senior journalist, who is considered a source privy to GHQ lodges, Rauf Kalasra suggests that despite that Lieutenant General Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmad being second in the seniority list and most suitable contender of this post, PM Nawaz Sharif has decided against making him next Army Chief.

Earlier, the word was that Lt General Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmed was to be next COAS, but, his aggressive nature and some other issues have been objected by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

As per the journalist, PM has decided to supersede him and appoint Lt Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa as the next Army Chief who stands 4th in the seniority list.

Another report from ARY News suggests that Nawaz Sharif may announce the name of next Chief in tomorrow, on the occasion of farewell dinner to General Raheel Sharif.

If chosen to replace present chief, General Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmed would be the 16th Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Pakistan.

Business Recorder’s report suggests, “Political pundits maintain that the recent civil-military divide on a number of issues ranging from trade with India, the civilian government’s continued silence on Indian spy Yadav, the failure of the government to deal with Panama papers five months down the line, failure to deal with corruption, data manipulation by the Ministry of Finance has led General Raheel Sharif to insist that the Prime Minister endorses his selection for his successor.”

Ninth in the seniority list, Lieutenant General Qamar Javed Bajwa is currently serving as the Inspector General Training and Development GHQ. Present Army Chief General Raheel Sharif, before taking over the post of COAS, served on this post.

The entire defence installations including GHQ, AHQ [air headquarters] and NHQ [navel headquarters], PM Secretariat and government security are also under the responsibility of a Commander of 10 Corps.

Lt. Gen Bajwa has commanded Corp 10 which is considered as the biggest and the most important Corp.

He has also served asChief of Force Command Northern Areas and also commanded as Brigadier while commanding a peace mission to Congo.

Belonging to Baloch regiment, his vast experience is in Kashmir and northern areas issues.

As a brigadier, he held a position of COS [chief of staff] at 10 Corps and also commanded formation division in Northern Areas as formation commander (FCNA), besides he also commanded infantry school and as Lt-Gen, he commanded 10 Corps.

Since the military remains heavily engaged in counter-terrorism operations and with the situation on the border with India remaining tense a candidate with a strong profile in dealing with such matters would be the best choice.

However, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, is likely to keep his past experiences with individual military generals as well as his personal likes and dislikes in mind before making his final decision.