ISLAMABAD  - At least five two-star generals are expected to get promotions to the next rank with as many three-star generals are retiring from the service in the ongoing year.

Anytime in the coming months, the Army Promotion Board is to take up the cases concerning the promotions of five respectively senior-most two-star generals of Pakistan Army including Major General Naveed Ahmed, Maj Gen Sohail Abbas Zaidi, Maj Gen Rizwan Akhtar, Maj Gen Shehzad Sikander and Maj Gen Mian Hilal Hussain, informed sources to this correspondent in a recent background interaction.

These officers were among the batch of 29 officers who were given promotions from brigadier to Maj Gen rank in the year 2010.

So far, three officers from this batch have been promoted to the lieutenant general rank, eleven have been superseded, ten are eligible for promotions this year whereas the remaining four major generals are from the Army Medical Corps (AMC) who have not been superseded but they would retire this year. One major general from the same batch Naushad Ahmed Kayani succumbed to blood cancer last year.

Maj Gen Rizwan Akhtar, who is third in the seniority list of major generals, is among the leading scorers at the military’s Officers Efficiency Index (OEI), the officials informed.

This year, according to sources, the promotions from two to three-star general rank would be made from the batch of the major generals promoted in March 2010. These 29 officers are:  Nadir Zeb, Allah Ditta Khan, Obaid Ullah Khan, Naveed Ahmed, Mian M Hilal Hussain, Zahid Latif Mirza, Imran Zafar, Shahzad Sikander, Asghar Nawaz, Sohail Abbas Zaidi, Abid Hasan, Ikram-ul-Haq, Nasrullah Tahir Dogar, Agha Masood Akram, Inam-ul-Haq, Sohail Ahmed Khan, Naushad Ahmed Kayani (late), Rizwan Akhtar, Tariq Javed, Ghayur Mahmood, Sajid Iqbal, Imtiaz Hussain Sherazi, Faiz Muhammad Khan Bangash, Iqbal Asi, Jamal Shahid, Adil Khan, Amjad Fahim, Hamid Shafique and Abdul Khaliq Naveed.    

Out of them the three officers who have already been elevated to the major general positions are: Zahid Latif Mirza (Army Air Defence Command), Ikram-ul-Haq (Infantry) and Obaidullah Khan Khattak (Artillery). The ten officers who are eligible for promotions are: Naveed Ahmed, Sohail Abbas Zaidi, Rizwan Akhtar, Shehzad Sikander, Mian Hilal Hussain, Tariq Javed, Ghayur Mehmood, Asghar Nawaz, Nadir Zeb and Iqbal Asi. The eleven superseded Maj-Gens are: Jamal Shahid, Sajid Iqbal, Faiz Bangash, Abid Hasan, Nasrullah Dogar, Allah Ditta Khan, Imtiaz Sherazi, Masood Akram, Inam-ul-Haq, Sohail Ahmad Khan and Imran Zafar. The four officers from the AMC who have not been superseded but would retire from the military this year without getting promotions are: Hamid Shafiq, Adil Khan, Abdul Khaliq Naveed and Amjad Fahim. These officers are not to be promoted due to the reason that only one major general at a time from the AMC is elevated to the major general rank (surgeon general) whereas the incumbent Surgeon General Lt Gen Azhar Rashid is retiring next year.

Of the ten major generals whose promotions are due, if not superseded, four are from Infantry, two each from Artillery and Engineers and one each from Armoured Corps (AC) and Signals.

Maj Gen Naveed Ahmed (Artillery) is Sector Commander at Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in Sindh province. Maj Gen Sohail Abbas Zaidi (Signals) is a Deputy Director General at the ISI Headquarters in Islamabad, Maj Gen Rizwan Akhat (Infantry) is Director General Sindh Rangers, Maj Gen Shahzad Sikander (Engineers) is DG Works at the General Headquarters (GHQ), Maj-Gen Hilal Hussain (Artillery) is DG Military Training at the GHQ, Maj Gen Tariq Javed (Infantry) is DG Personnel at the GHQ, Maj Gen Ghayur Mehmood (Infantry) is Inspector General (IG) Frontier Corps (FC) Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Maj Gen Asghar Nawaz (Engineers) is DG National Logistics Cell (NLC), Maj Gen Nadir Zeb (AC) is DG Human Resource at GHQ whereas Maj Gen Iqbal Asi (Infantry) is a Force Commander at a United Nations (UN) mission.  

This year five major generals, Tariq Khan, Zaheer-ul-Islam, Saleem Nawaz, Khalid Rabbani and Sajjad Ghani, are retiring from Pakistan Army which would leave room for the promotions to the three-star general rank against the vacant slots. At least four to five major generals get promotions every year but the number can be increased considering the requirements and the military command’s decision to this effect.

Two generals, Khalid Shameem Wynne and Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, and three major generals, Haroon Aslam, Khalid Nawaz and Alam Khattak retired in 2013 whereas nine major generals were promoted to the major general rank last year. They were Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmad, Zamir-ul- Hassan Shah, Qamar Javed Bajwa, Javed Iqbal, Khalid Asghar, Mazhar Jamil, Zahid Latif Mirza, Ikramul Haq and Obaidullah Khan Khattak.

In first major administrative reshuffle at the three-star general level under the command of the incumbent Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif last December, the positions of six major generals were changed with the subsequent transfers and postings involving three corps commanders. Lt Gen Syed Tariq Nadeem Gilani, Commander Army Strategic Force Command (ASFC), was replaced with Lt Gen Obaidullah Khan Khattak. Gilani was appointed as Chief of Logistics Staff (CLS). Adjutant General (AG) Lt Gen Javed Iqbal was appointed Corps Commander Bahawalpur. Lt Gen Zahid Latif Mirza was appointed Commander AADC. He replaced Lt Gen Zamir-ul-Hassan Shah who was appointed AG whereas Lt Gen Ikram-ul-Haq was appointed IG Training and Evaluation (IGT&E) at the GHQ.