Steady growth in Army bureaucracy
By Ansar Abbasi: The News, September 1, 2007
ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Army has presently more than 125 general officers in its strength. While a lot is said and written about the civilian bureaucracy, not many know about the military bureaucracy, which is today far more bloated compared to what it was a few decades back.
Today we have three full four-star generals, 30 three-star generals also called lieutenant generals while the number of two-star generals — major generals — is said to be almost 100. This number, however, includes those serving generals who are also presently occupying civilian posts including the Presidency.
Although the serving general officers currently holding civilian positions are not in a huge number,there are hundreds of retired soldiers including dozens of ex-generals who are now occupying civil service positions including the key posts like ambassadors in Pakistan’s missions abroad, heads of authorities, corporations and departments.
A list of ex-servicemen, serving against the civil posts, last presented before the Parliament and also published by some newspapers included almost 600 names. According to sources, the number of General officers in the pre-1965 Pakistan Army was about 30. But in the aftermath of the 1965 war the military was restructured and new formations were raised that took the number of general officers to almost 60.
The 1971 war yet again resulted into further growth in the number of General officers. However, it was during General Ziaul Haq’s tenure when a major expansion of army was done. During the present military rule, these sources said, the expansion was done in two areas — Army Strategic Force Command and Air Defence System.
Promotions in the army and in the topmost ranks, it is said, are strictly done against the posts that are sanctioned by the government. “There is no such thing that you start promoting the officers and sending them to the civilian side,” a source said adding that besides clear vacancies certain promotions are made against “pool vacancies”.
Unlike the distortions that are characteristics of the civilian bureaucracy and which furthered during the last eight years, the systems in the military have not been played with. While in the civilian bureaucracy no top mandarin gets retired and is generously allowed extension in complete violation of the law and rules, the Pakistan Army, during the last eight years, has seen just three cases of extensions.
These exceptional military extensions include the case of General Musharraf himself who continues to be the Army Chief since 1998. The second extension that the top General granted during his rule was that of his Chief of Staff Lt Gen (retd) Hamid Javaid, who when offered another year’s extension a few years back preferred to hang his boots instead of depending on a leased military life. The third case of extension is that of Lt Gen Khalid Kidwai, who is presently heading the strategic planning division. Kidwai was to retire last year but Musharraf gave him one-year extension reportedly because of his technical assignment.
Amongst the full Generals that we presently have in the military, General Pervez Musharraf, who for being the Chief of Army Staff, tops the list. The two other four star Generals include General Ahsan Saleem Hayat, Vice Chief of Army Staff and General Ehsan ul Haq, Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee.
The three star Generals, who are also appointed as Corps Commander, presently serving the Pakistan Army include Lt Gen Khalid Ahmed Kidwai, Director General Strategic Planning Division, Lt Gen Malik Arif Hayat, Director General C4I (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence), Lt Gen Ashfaq Pervez Kiani, Director General Inter-Services Intelligence, Lt Gen Tariq Majeed, Corps Commander Rawalpindi, Lt Gen Safdar Hussain, Chief of Logistics Staff General Headquarters, Lt Gen Salahuddin Satti, Chief of General Staff General Headquarters, Lt Gen Mohammed Sabir, Director General Military Services General Headquarters, Lt Gen Waseem Ahmed Ashraf, Corps Commander Gujranwala, Lt Gen Syed Athar Ali, Director General Joint Staff at Joint Staff Headquarters, Lt Gen Hamid Rab Nawaz, Inspector General Training and Evaluation General Headquarters, Lt Gen Imtiaz Hussain, Adjutant General General Headquarters, Lt Gen Afzal Muzaffar, Quarter Master General, General Headquarters, Lt Gen Syed Sabahat Hussain, Chairman Pakistan Ordnance Factories, Lt Gen Masood Aslam, Corps Commander Peshawar, Lt Gen Shafaatullah Shah, Corps Commander Lahore, Lt Gen Israr Ahmed Ghumman, Director General Heavy Industries Taxila, Lt Gen Raza Muhammad Khan, Corps Commander Bahawalpur, Lt Gen Hamid Khan, President National Defence University, Lt Gen Mushtaq Ahmed Baig, Surgeon General, General Headquarters, Lt Gen Sikandar Afzal, Corps Commander Multan, Lt Gen Sajjad Akram, Corps Commander Mangla, Lt Gen Nadeem Ahmad, Deputy Chairman Earthquake Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Authority (ERRA), Lt Gen Muhammad Zaki, Director General Infantry General Headquarters, Lt Gen Ahsan Azhar Hayat, Corps Commander Karachi, Lt Gen Ijaz Ahmed Bakhshi, Director General Weapons and Equipment General Headquarters, Lt Gen Mohammad Ashraf Saleem, Commander Army Air Defence Command, Lt Gen Shahid Niaz, Engineer-in-Chief Frontier Works Organisation, Lt Gen Khalid Shameem Wynne, Corps Commander Quetta, Lt Gen Muhammad Yousaf, Vice Chief of General Staff General Headquarters and Lt Gen Syed Absar Hussain, Commander Army Strategic Forces Command.