ISLAMABAD - In a major reshuffle, military command has changed the portfolios of several general ranking officers giving them important command and staff positions, including that of a corps commander, two general officers commanding (GOCs) and a deputy director general at Inter-Services Intelligence.

According to military sources, Lieutenant-General Naweed Zaman has been appointed Commander IV Corps (Corps Commander Lahore), Major-General Ahmad Mahmood Hayat has been assigned the duties of Deputy DG (Analysis) at ISI headquarters, Major-General Javed Bukhari has been made new GOC 17 Infantry Division Swat, while Major-General Abid Ejaz Kahloon has been tasked with heading 40 Infantry Division as its GOC Dera Ismail Khan. The two staff appointments involve the placements of newly-promoted Lieutenant-General Mazhar Jamil as Military Secretary at General Headquarters and Lieutenant-General Khalid Asghar as Inspector General Communication and Information Technology (C&IT). Before his promotion Asghar had already been serving as IG C&IT as a two-star general.  The slot of corps commander Lahore was lying vacant since last month following the appointment of Lieutenant-General Maqsood Ahmad as Military Advisor to United Nations secretary general. New Corps Commander Naweed Zaman was the MS at GHQ before being replaced by Mazhar Jamil.

Ahmad Mahmood Hayat, whose two brothers, Zubair Mahmood Hayat and Omar Mahmood Hayat, are also the serving generals, has replaced Major-General Sahibzada Isfandiyar Pataudi at ISI. Hayat was previously the GOC 40 Infantry Division DI Khan. The new GOC DI Khan, Abid Khloon, was awaiting appointment for six months since his promotion as two-star general in March this year. Pataudi has not been assigned a new posting immediately. He may be appointed as GOC 8 Infantry Division Sialkot where no immediate appointment has reportedly been made. This slot has been lying vacant after appointment of Javed Bukhari as GOC 17 Infantry Division Swat. This position had recently fallen vacant following the killing of Major-General Sanaullah Khan Niazi at the hands of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan in Upper Dir area. GOC 19 Infantry Division Swat Major-General Ghulam Qamar had the additional charge of 17 Infantry Division.

Furthermore, last week’s promotions of Mazhar Jamil and Khalid Asghar have brought a reported end to this year’s promotional cycle for the two-star generals, with 10 major-generals promoted to the rank of lieutenant-general in ongoing 2013. Four of the promoted generals belonged to Infantry, two each to Artillery and Engineers, and one each to Armoured Corps and Air Defence. This January, four maj-gens, Maqsood Ahmad, Zubair Mehmood Hayat, Wajid Hussain and Najeebullah Khan, were promoted while two senior most maj-gens Raza Muhammad and Khawar Hanif were superseded.

In August, four more maj-gens Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmad, Zamir-ul-Hassan Shah, Qamar Javed Bajwa and Javed Iqbal were elevated to the next level. With the exception of Ishfaq Nadeem, all the other nine lt-gens promoted this year have been assigned postings.  Maqsood Ahmad, Ishfaq Nadeem, Qamar Bajwa and Javed Iqbal are from Infantry, Zubair Hayat and Mazhar Jamil from Artillery, Najeebullah and Khalid Asghar from Engineers and Wajid Hussain and Zamir Shah are, respectively, from Armoured Corps and Air Defence. Lt-Gen Zubair is Corps Commander Bhawalpur; Lt-Gen Wajid is Chairman Heavy Industries Taxila (HIT); Lt-Gen Najeeb is Engineer-in-Chief; Lt-Gen Zamir is Commander Air Defence Command (ADC); Lt-Gen Qamar is Corps Commander Rawalpindi and Lt-Gen Javed is president of National Defence University Islamabad. Earlier in March, 29 brigadiers were promoted as maj-gens.

Apart from operational requirements, the retirements of three-star and four-star generals have created a room for the promotions of two-star generals. This January, Chief of General Staff Lt-Gen Waheed Arshad had retired. In August, Corps Commander Rawalpindi Lt-Gen Khalid Nawaz reached the age of superannuation. His retirement was followed by that of Corps Commander Quetta Lt-Gen Alam Khattak who has been replaced this month by President NDU Lt-Gen Nasir Janjua as Corps Commander Quetta. Next month, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee Gen Khalid Shameem Wynne would be retiring to be followed by the retirement of COAS General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani in November.