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Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa hands over baton of command to Gen Asim Munir

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  • Gen Asim Munir becomes 17th COAS of Pakistan.
  • Gen Bajwa hands over command to Gen Asim Munir in ceremony at GHQ.
  • General Bajwa presented guard of honour for last time as COAS.

General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Tuesday handed over the command of the Pakistan Army to his successor Gen Asim Munir in a ceremony held at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi.

With the change of command, Gen Munir has become the 17th army chief of the Pakistan Army when Gen Bajwa handed over the baton to him.

Before handing over the command, Gen Bajwa, in his last address, congratulated his successor Gen Asim Munir for being promoted to the four star rank and as the head of the army.

“I have full faith that under his leadership army will reach new heights and his appointment will prove to be a positive for the country,” said Gen Bajwa. He added that he was happy to know that he was retiring by handing the army to an able officer like Gen Munir. 

Gen Bajwa said that his journey in the army started 44 years ago and has ended today. 

“I am thankful to Allah that he not only gave me an opportunity to work in the courageous and great army but also honoured me to command this army,” he said.

Appreciating the Pakistan Army, Gen Bajwa said that his prayers will always be with it in difficult times. 

“I am proud that the army protects the borders from Siachen to Thar despite having limited resources,” he added.

Gen Bajwa said that the army defends regardless of language, colour, caste and religion.

“I will soon go into oblivion, but the spiritual connection will always remain with the army,” said General Bajwa. 

Earlier, General Bajwa was presented guard of honour for the last time as the chief of army staff during the ceremony.

The change of command ceremony marks the time-honoured tradition that symbolises the seamless transition of military leadership.

The ceremony was attended by the Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Sahir Shamshad Mirza and chiefs of the armed forces. It was also attended by senior serving and retired military officers with their families.

Chief ministers, federal ministers, secretaries and foreign military officers deployed at embassies were also present at the ceremony.

Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa at the Yadgar-e-Shuhda for the last time as chief of army staff with his successor Gen Asim Munir during a ceremony at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, on November 29, 2022. — Screengrab/PTV
Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa at the Yadgar-e-Shuhda for the last time as chief of army staff with his successor Gen Asim Munir during a ceremony at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, on November 29, 2022. — Screengrab/PTV

Before the ceremony, Gen Bajwa visited the Yadgar-e-Shuhda for the last time as chief of army staff. Gen Munir had accompanied him during the visit.

Gen Munir was chosen to lead the country’s army by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on November 24. The summary of his appointment was approved by President Arif Alvi the same day.

PM Shehbaz calls COAS Gen Munir

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif telephoned COAS Gen Munir to congratulate him on assuming the charge. The premier said that it was a great honour for the armed forces to have a brave soldier like him as their commander-in-chief.

He assured Gen Munir that the government will continue to cooperate with him in matters related to the defence, security, and protection of the homeland.

Gen Asim Munir

Gen Asim Munir after taking charge of Pakistan Armys command during a ceremony at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, on November 29, 2022. — Screengrab/PTV
Gen Asim Munir after taking charge of Pakistan Army’s command during a ceremony at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, on November 29, 2022. — Screengrab/PTV

Gen Munir was commissioned in the 23rd Frontier Force Regiment in 1986. He passed out with the 17th Officers Training course, Mangla and was awarded the coveted sword of honour.

Before taking charge he was posted as the quartermaster general at the General Head Quarters.

Before taking charge as COAS, Gen Munir was also posted as a directing staff in Command and Staff College, Quetta, brigade major of a deployed infantry brigade in Kel, general staff officer, grade-2, CGS secretariat and chief of staff of Mangla corps.

Gen Munir has commanded the 23rd Frontier Force Regiment, Infantry Brigade, remained as a force commander in Northern Areas, Gilgit.

The incoming army chief has also served as the director general of Military Intelligence (MI).

In 2018, Gen Munir was appointed as the director general of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and later transferred as corps commander Gujranwala.

After heading the Gujranwala corps, he was posted as quartermaster general which was his last assignment before becoming COAS.

Gen Munir graduated from Fuji school Japan, Command and Staff College, Quetta, Malaysian Armed Forces College, Kuala Lumpur and National Defence University, Islamabad.

The general also has M Phil in Public Policy and Strategic Security Management from National Defence University.

Gen Munir has become the first army chief who has headed both — MI and ISI. He is also the first army chief awarded the Sword of Honour.

Gen Munir is a keen sportsman, avid reader, traveller and also a Hafiz e Quran.

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The PML-N session regarding the Supreme Court’s verdict on reserved seats has been postponed.

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The PML-N session, which was planned for today and involved the party’s leaders, has been postponed. This decision was made as party president Nawaz Sharif engaged in extensive discussions with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and CM Maryam Nawaz on the issue, according to sources.

Consultations were also attended by Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar. According to sources, the group extensively deliberated on all facets of the highest court’s ruling regarding reserved seats.

The party leaders’ scheduled consultation session for today has been postponed due to Muharram.

Nawaz Sharif has personally engaged in consultations with party leaders, conducting meetings with certain individuals and maintaining telephonic communication with others to deliberate on different possibilities about the situation.

PML-N leaders have voiced their concerns with the ruling and have called for a parliamentary response.

According to party insiders, a consultative conference of the PML-N will be called in Lahore in the near future.

According to sources, Shehbaz Sharif would provide a detailed explanation of the future plan to the People’s Party and other partners of his government.

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) achieved a significant legal triumph as the Supreme Court of Pakistan reversed the decision to deny reserved seats to the PTI-supported Sunni Ittehad Council.

The Supreme Court issued a divided ruling with an 8-5 split on a petition filed by the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) about the allotment of special seats.

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PTI received unwelcome respite, according to Rana Sanaullah

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In the Sunni Ittehad Council (SIC) reserved seat dispute, the government would respect the majority ruling of the Supreme Court, according to PMLN senior leader and advisor on political affairs Rana Sanaullah Khan.

He stated that after examining the decision, the government’s legal team would react appropriately. According to Rana Sanaullah, the legal team would determine whether or not to submit a review petition.

“SIC petitions were rejected but PTI was given that relief which was neither asked in the petition nor contest during the proceeding,” asserted Rana Sanaullah in response to the ruling.

He argued that because parties established administrations with a simple majority, the PMLN-led unity movement did not have a two-thirds majority.

According to Rana Sanaullah, PTI should challenge election tribunal rulings, with the government carrying out the rulings.

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The membership of Sher Afzal Marwat has been suspended by PTI.

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According to sources, PTI officials convened with imprisoned party founder Imran Khan on Thursday to make a decision over Marwat.

The party authorities alleged that Sher Afzal Marwat had been consistently breaching party discipline over the past month.

“In the meeting with Imran Khan, it was mutually agreed that no leader holds a superior position within the party, and any other leaders who deviate from the party’s stance will face similar consequences,” they stated.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has recently issued a show-cause notice to Sher Afzal Marwat due to his irresponsible utterances.

The notice, issued by PTI Secretary General Omar Ayub Khan, requires Marwat to provide an explanation for his utterances within a three-day period. These statements have been considered harmful to the party’s reputation.

The notification declares that making such utterances goes against the party’s code of conduct and contravenes the explicit directives of the party’s founder, Imran Khan, who has underscored the significance of accountable conduct.

Marwat was cautioned that if they fail to react or offer a satisfactory explanation, it could result in additional disciplinary measures.

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