- According to the petitioner, the regular COAS appointment process is unconstitutional.
- The court observes that such a case should be heard by the entire court.
- Recommends that the petitioner file his plea with the Supreme Court.
LAHORE: According to The News, the Lahore High Court (LHC) ruled on Wednesday that a motion to nominate the army commander based on seniority was inadmissible.
Advocate Najma Ahmed petitioned the court, requesting that the respondents name the person with the most experience as the next army chief.
petitioner’s claim, Qamar Javed Bajwa, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), would retire on November 29. When selecting the new COAS, the Ministry of Defence’s list of five generals for the role of army commander is considered, with tradition in mind.
petitioner says, one of the five military officials might be appointed army commander at the prime minister’s discretion under business norms.
Petitioner referenced Article 243 (4b) of the Constitution, which describes the mechanism for selecting the Chief of Army Staff, and stated that this system is illegitimate and illegal since it breaches Article 25 of the Constitution.
He claimed that the federal government is legally compelled to name the next army chief. The petitioner urged the judge to name the army’s senior-most officer as commander-in-chief.
The petitioner claimed that eminent lawyer Aitzaz Ahsan had also expressed disagreement to the army chief’s appointment through the traditional process.
Petitioner was urged to contact the Supreme Court, as such an issue should be handled by the full court.
It should be noted that after extensive deliberations in London between PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, it was decided to name the military’s senior-most officer as the next army chief.
Following the discussion, PM Shehbaz told reporters that the army chief would be chosen in accordance with the constitution.
Furthermore, at a news conference last month, Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif stated that any of the five applicants for the job of future chief of army staff might be chosen.
In response to a question on the selection of the army chief based on seniority, the defense minister stated, “All three-star generals are eligible for this.”