Shall Wisdom Dawn On New Pakistan Army Chief?

Pakistan Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa is scheduled to relinquish office on November 29. Pakistan government has not been able to name his successor as yet. Bajwa held the top post of Pakistan Army for six long years. There was compatibility between former prime minister of Pakistan Imran Khan and Gen Bajwa, but their equation went horribly bad later. Bajwa ruled out any extension for himself.

The debate here is not about Bajwa or his successor. It has to be viewed in a different perspective. During his second term, Bajwa sounded reconciliatory. The borders to a great extent remained silent towards the end of his term. In the two editions of Islamabad Security Dialogue, both in 2021 and 2022, Gen Bajwa publicly made some interesting statements.

In a guarded manner, Bajwa regretted Pakistan’s terror policy. He stressed upon the need to address the larger socio-economic and political issues through mutual cooperation, respect and understanding with India. It was not a mere statement. Defense analysts are of the opinion that in spite of the internal compulsions and the political upsurge, Bajwa was determined not to allow the jihadis to hold the Pakistani state to ransom.

It remains to be seen whether Bajwa’s successor would like to undo the state terror policy, as his predecessor wanted. Or will he provide new lease to the jihadi policy? Some analysts believe that March and April 2023 shall determine how the new Army chief of Pakistan shall swing. Let us hope that good sense prevails and peace is given a chance in the larger interest of the people of the two nations.


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