K M Shafiullah
|Major General K. M. Shafiullah|
|Known for||Chief of Army Staff|
Kazi Mohammad Shafiullah (Bir Uttam) was a Bangladesh Army Major general and the 2nd Chief of Army Staff of the Bangladesh Army. During the Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971, he was the Second in Command of Second East Bengal Regiment that revolted with six officers on the night of 4 April 1971. He became the Sector Commander of Sector 3, Headquartered in India. However, he did not see any active combat, but later still, towards the end of September he was appointed one of three brigade commanders, leading what was called the "S-force" (after his surname) during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971.
Bangladesh Liberation War
Shafiullah was the Sector Commander of Bangladesh Forces Sector 3. His sector was headquartered in India where he remained during he entire duration of the war, mainly the opposite of Sylhet. The sector's areas were Dhaka, Mymensingh, Sylhet and parts of Comilla (present Brahmanbaria district).
Later three brigades were formed, each identified by the initial of the commander's surname. His formation was fully structured and formalised by the end of September. As of September 1971, Commander of Sector 3 was assigned to Major A.N.M Nuruzzaman. Major Shafiullah was among those attending the Pakistan surrender on 16 December 1971 at Race Course in Dhaka.
Chief of Army Staff
After the end of the war in December 1971, the Bangladesh government awarded him the Bir Uttam for his bravery and dedication, the second-highest military award in the country. He was appointed as the Chief of Army Staff of Bangladesh Army on 5 April 1972 by the Awami League government under Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
On 7 April 1972, Colonel Osmani and Lt. Col. Abdul Arab resigned from their posts, and the Army command was given to Shafiullah, on 7 April, Bangladesh Air Force to A K Khandker and Bangladesh Navy to Nurul Haq.
He was the chief of Bangladesh Army during the assassination of then president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. During the assassination, he remained inactive, and later claimed to have known nothing about the plot. Dismissed from the position on 25 August 1975 by the following Mushtaq government, he retired from army. He was succeeded by Ziaur Rahman as army Chief. General Shafiullah quickly accepted an ambassadorial post overseas, along with fellow Bangladesh Air Force Chief of Air Staff Air Vice Marshal A.K. Khandker. He was elected as an Awami League Member of Parliament in 1996.
After retirement from army
K. M. Shafiullah joined the sector commanders forum and became its chairman in 2014.
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