Are the generals unhappy behind the legal challenge to extension for Bajwa?
ISLAMABAD: Is there more than it seems to the naked eye in the legal challenge to the three-year extension of Pakistan's army chief, General Qamar Bajwa, that caused a great shame for the general? Could the scheme have been developed by generals whose perspectives were effectively affected by the continuation of General Bajwa?
Only two days before General Bajwa completed a three-year term as head of the army and before the Supreme Court decided his extension case, the Pakistan army had announced a major reorganization of his case. Lieutenant General Sahir Shamshad Mirza was appointed Chief of Staff, the most important and prestigious event after the COAS. Lieutenant General Muhammad Amir was appointed general assistant.
The list published by Inter Public Relations (ISPR), the army media wing, also included the names of two body commanders. Lieutenant General Shaheen Mazhar Mahmood was appointed commander of the Mangrove Corps (which deals with LoC and all Indian operations) and Lieutenant General Nauman Mehmood was appointed commander of Peshawar Corps (western border and anti-terrorism operations).
The petition in the Supreme Court against the extension of General Bajwa, as it happened just when the crucial appointments were finalized, was presented by the lawyer Riaz Hanif Rahi, whose record indicates that he has always submitted references against people inconvenient to the army such as the former Chief Judge Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and Judge Qazi Faez Isa.
Rahi is known for filing controversial petitions in court. It is considered that the last request is something that could not be considered without strong support from the military. Rahi has also challenged the special court created to judge former President Pervez Musharraf for treason. His background strongly suggests that he was instigated to challenge the extension of General Bajwa through a section of army officers who were adversely affected by her, Indian sources feel. The lieutenant general, who was the most important after General Bajwa, retired after Lieutenant General Nadeem Raza was appointed chairman of the joint committee of chiefs of staff on November 27. General Raza will serve for three years. It is made by the prime minister. After Gen Raza, Lieutenant General Humayun Aziz is the oldest.