Army Chief’s Tenure Extension: CJP Irked By Court’s Mention In Draft Notification

The top court directs AGP to eliminate word “court” from the draft notification made third time by the government for extension in tenure of COAS General Qamar Javed Bajwa
LAHORE: Chief Justice of Pakistan Asif Saeed Khosa on Thursday snubbed the top law officer for mentioning court in draft notification issued for extension in tenure of Army Chief General Qamar javed Bajwa.

As hearing commenced, Attorney General Mansoor Anwar Khan submitted the summary of draft notification for General Bajwa’s extension prepared by the government on Wednesday. The CJP surprised to read the name of the court in summary of draft notification.

“Why you are dragging us in the middle? Do it, because it is your work?,” the CJP snubbed the AGP. He also remarked: “Bear your own burden rather than dragging the courts into it,”. “It will become a precedent if we allow three-year extension,” CJP remarked and said that they did not want the courts to be dragged in the middle.

The CJP directed the AGP to eliminate the mention of the courts from the draft notification, observing that we could not even point out what is wrong if the court name is used here. He also noted that the post of Army chief was already occupied by General Bajwa.

“When a post is already occupied then how an appointment can be made,” the CJP asked the AGP. He also directed the attorney general to remove the words “court’s advice” and observed that “it is different matter if the president seeks our advice,”.

On Wednesday, the government failed to satisfy the top court regarding the matter of extension in tenure of Army chief General Qamar Bajwa. Soon after the court hearing, Prime Minister Imran Khan called an emergency meeting of the cabinet to discuss the government’s strategy for Supreme Court’s proceedings on Thursday (today). Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa himself also attended the cabinet meeting along with Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan submitted a summary to President Arif Alvi for approval to “reappoint” the army chief on his retirement and the new appointment was made under Article 243(4) of the Constitution, but the notification later issued pertains to the “grant of extension” to the COAS for another term of three years.