Qamar Javed Bajwa

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General
Qamar Javed Bajwa
قمر جاوید باجوہ

NI (M) HI(M)
General Qamar Javed Bajwa.jpg
Flag of the Pakistani Army.svg 10th Chief of Army Staff
Assumed office
29 November 2016[1]
Preceded by General Raheel Sharif
Inspector General of the Training and Evaluation
In office
22 September 2015 – 29 November 2016
Commander X Corps,Rawalpindi
In office
14 August 2013 – 22 September 2015
Personal details
Born (1960-11-11) 11 November 1960 (age 57)[2]
Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan
Parents Lt Col Muhammad Iqbal Bajwa (father)
Education Sir Syed College, Gordon College, Pakistan Military Academy
Awards Order of Excellence Nishan-e-Imtiaz.pngNishan-e-Imtiaz (Military)
Crescent of Excellence Hilal-e-Imtiaz.pngHilal-i-Imtiaz (Military)
Military service
Allegiance  Pakistan
Service/branch  Pakistan Army
Years of service 1978 – present
Rank OF-9 Pakistan Army.svgUS-O10 insignia.svgGeneral
Unit Baloch 1h1.jpg16th Baloch Regiment
Commands 16th Chief of Army Staff
Ins-Gen. Training and Evaluation
X Corps in Rawalpindi
GOC Force Command North, Gilgit
Pakistan Armed Forces–Africa Command
Battles/wars

Dongo conflict in Africa
2014 Indo-Pakistani tenions
War in Afghanistan
War in North-West Pakistan

General Qamar Javed Bajwa (Urdu: قمر جاوید باجوہ‎; born 11 November 1960), NI(M), HI(M), is the 10th and current Chief of Army Staff of the Pakistan Army. A four-star rank general, he was appointed to the post on 29 November 2016. According to magazine Forbes, Bajwa is the 68th most powerful person in the world.[3][1] Born in Karachi, Bajwa was educated at the Sir Syed College and Gordon College in Rawalpindi before joining the Pakistan Military Academy in 1978.

Bajwa was commissioned in 1980 in the 16th Battalion of the Baloch Regiment. Prior to his appointment as the Chief of Army Staff of Pakistan Army, he served at the Army GHQ as the Inspector General of the Training and Evaluation from 22 September 2015 to 29 November 2016 and as field commander of the X Corps from 14 August 2013 to 22 September 2015 which is responsible for the area along the Line of Control at Kashmir. In addition, he served as a Brigadier in the UN mission in Congo and as a brigade commander in 2007.

Early life and education[edit]

Bajwa was born on 11 November 1960 in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan[2] into a Punjabi-speaking Jat family that initially hailed and belonged to Ghakhar Mandi, Punjab, Pakistan.[4][5][6] His father, Lieutenant-Colonel Muhammad Iqbal Bajwa, was an officer of Pakistan Army who died while in service in 1967 in Quetta, Balochistan, Pakistan.[4] Bajwa was seven years old when his father died and he was the youngest of five siblings.[2] He and his siblings were raised by their mother, who passed away in September 2013.[7] Bajwa's father-in-law, Ijaz Amjad,[8] was also an Pakistan Army officer who retired with a two-star rank, Major-General.[9]

Bajwa completed his secondary and intermediate education at Sir Syed College in Rawalpindi[10] and Gordon College in Rawalpindi before joining the Pakistan Army in 1978,[2] which directed him to attend the military academy.[11] He was sent to attend the Pakistan Military Academy in Kakul and passed out with the class of 62nd PMA Long Course[11] in 1980.[12]

Bajwa is a graduate of Command and Staff in Canada and later attended and secured his graduation from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, United States.[2] He also attended the National Defence University.[2][12][13][14] Bajwa is married to Ayesha. The couple have two sons, Saad and Ali.[2]

Career in the military[edit]

After joining the Pakistan Army in 1978[2], Bajwa was sent to enrolled at the Pakistan Military Academy (PMA) in Kakul, and passed out from the PMA Kakul where he gained commissioned as 2nd-Lt., on 24 October 1980 in the 16th Baloch Regiment at the Sialkot Cantonment – the same unit that his father commanded.[15][12]

In 1992, Major Bajwa briefly served in the 5th Northern Light Infantry Regiment in Kashmir.[16][17] In addition, Lieutenant-Colonel Bajwa served in the X Corps, stationed in Rawalpindi, as a staff officer.[16] Upon promoting as one-star rank army general, Brigadier Bajwa served as the Chief of Staff (COS) at the X Corps before promoting to the two-star rank and commanding a division in Northern Pakistan.[18][19]

In 2007, Brig. Bajwa commanded the Pakistan Armed Forces-Africa Command, attached to the UN peacekeeping mission MONUSCO, in Congo[16][19][11][2] Brig. Bajwa served in the Congo as a brigade commander under[20][21] then-Major General Bikram Singh, the former Chief of the Army Staff of the Indian Army from 2012–14.[22] Gen. Singh later termed Bajwa's performance there as "professional and outstanding."[23][20]

After being promoted to two-star rank in May 2009, Major-General Bajwa took over the command of the Force Command Northern Areas (FCNA) as its GOC, stationed in Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan.[24][25][26][27][22][18]

In August 2011, he was honored with the Hilal-i-Imtiaz (Military),[28] and posted as an instructor at the School of Infantry and Tactics in Quetta,[29], and later taught staff course at Command and Staff College in Quetta, and course on national security at the National Defence University.[12][13]

On 14 August 2013, Maj-Gen. Bajwa was promoted to three-star rank and posted as field commander of the X Corps, stationed in Rawalpindi.[30][31][32] He was appointed as Grade-I officer during his tenure as field commander of the X Corps.[19] The appointment was commented in the news media that noted that Lt-Gen. Bajwa had been posted in X Corps thrice,[19] which is the army's important and largest corps, which has experience of keeping control over the situation in Kashmir.[22].[22][33]

In 2014, Lt-Gen. Bajwa was appointed as Colonel Commandant of Baloch Regiment.[34]

On 22 September 2015, Lt-Gen. Bajwa was posted in the Army GHQ when he appointed as the Inspector-General of the Training and Evaluation (IGT&E) where he was a Principal Staff Officer to then-Chief of Army Staff, General Raheel Sharif.[35][36]

Chief of Army Staff[edit]

Bajwa with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and members of the federal cabinet

In 2016, Prime Minister Sharif confirmed the timely retirement of Chairman joint chiefs General Rashad Mahmood, while General Raheel Sharif dismissed rumores of seeking the extension for his term.[37]

Initially, the race for the appointment for the army chief was rumored between Lt-Gen. Zubair Hayat and Lt-Gen. Javed Ramday who was close to the first family.[38][39] However, Prime Minister Sharif announced to appoint the senior most army general, Lt-Gen. Zubair Hayat was appointed Chairman joint chiefs committee.[40]

On 28 November 2016, Prime Minister Sharif eventually announced to appoint the fourth by seniority, General Bajwa, as the chief of army staff, superseding two generals who were senior than him.[41][42][43][44][45]

His strong pro-democracy stance and views may have influenced his appointment as an army chief as noted by the media pundits.[46] The Reuters Pakistan reported that Prime Minister Sharif picked Bajwa because of his low-key style.[47] He was also noted as the fourth oldest army chief of staff.[48]

About the reception of this appointment, Gen. Bajwa is known to have a sound understanding of Indian strategic ambitions in the region and experience of armed conflict on LoC in Kashmir.[17] In December 2016, he was awarded Nishan-e-Imtiaz.[49]

Under the command of Gen. Bajwa, the nationwide counterproliferation operations and Khyber-4 were launched in February 2017 and July 2017, respectively.[50]

In 2017, Gen. Bajwa received significant political criticism by the political circles and the Islamabad High Court for his political role during the far-right protests, in which Gen. Bajwa refused to follow the orders of Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to deploy troops in Islamabad in order to end the protest.[51] Instead, Gen. Bajwa acted to became a mediator and proposed Prime Minister to negotiate with the protesters which led to resignation of the Justice minister Zahid Hamid.[52][53][54][55]

Over the issue of supreme court case that disqualified Prime Minister Sharif, Gen. Bajwa reportedly refuted the leveld criticism on military playing a role in such regard.[56] In 2017, Gen. Bajwa testified the military's support for the parliamentary system before the Senate, denying any claims made in the news media of military seeking to support the presidentialism.[57]

The Bajwa Doctrine[edit]

In the first few months of 2018, media reports described his leadership vision as The Bajwa Doctrine, under that doctrine, the eighteenth amendment to the constitution of Pakistan and the financial policies of Ishaq Dar (who was the minister of finance in Nawaz Sharif government which was sacked on 28 July 2016) are disliked while financial policies of Asif Ali Zardari are preferred.[58] ISPR vehemently rejected that The Bajwa Doctrine has anything to do with the politics and if any such doctrine exists, it is only related to the security of Pakistan.[59][60]

Some reports say that The Bajwa Doctrine is at play behind the blackout of Geo TV which started on 1 April 2018. The blackout started after an off the record meeting with journalists in which Bajwa threatened Geo TV with consequences if it did not tow the line of military. The term The Bajwa Doctrine was coined by journalists in the result of that same off the record meeting.[61]

Awards[edit]

In 2017, he was awarded a Turkish Legion of Merit for promotion of defence ties between Pakistan and Turkey.[62]

Public image[edit]

Bajwa is an avid reader and has keen interest in the history of Europe.[17][2]

He enjoys cricket[2] and was himself a good sportsman who used to play cricket as a wicket-keeper.[10]

Reportedly, Gen. Bajwa doesn't have a "hatred" towards India contrary to an assumption that every high-ranking Pakistani military officer has some sort of a hostility for India[17] and he considers religious extremism to be a bigger threat to national security in Pakistan rather than India.[22]

He is reported to be a genuine military man with no interest in politics[22] and the one who remains well-connected with the junior officers and troops, and does not seek attention and protocol.[33]

References[edit]

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  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "General Bajwa's Battle". Newsweek Pakistan. 23 December 2016. Archived from the original on 23 December 2016. Retrieved 24 December 2016. 
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External links[edit]

Military offices
Preceded by
Gen Raheel Sharif
Chief of Army Staff
2016–present
Incumbent
Preceded by
Lt Gen Ikram Ul Haq
Inspector General of the Training and Evaluation
2015–2016
Succeeded by
Lt Gen Hidayat Ur Rehman
Preceded by
Lt Gen Khalid Nawaz Khan
Commander X Corps, Rawalpindi
2013–2015
Succeeded by
Lt Gen Malik Zafar Iqbal