Decision to become apolitical will help enhance Pak army’s prestige: Gen Bajwa

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Islamabad: Pakistan’s outgoing Chief of Military Workers (COAS), General Qamar Javed Bajwa believes that the military’s determination to turn into “apolitical” will assist improve its status in the long run.

“Pakistan Army has always remained a dominant player in national decision-making. Due to its historic role in country’s politics, the military drew severe criticism from public and politicians alike,” Geo News quoted Gen Bajwa as saying in an unique interview with the UAE -based publication Gulf News.

The COAS will hand over command of the military to General Asim Munir on Tuesday who was appointed as his successor by the federal government final week.

The final reiterated that the military has restricted its “role to its constitutionally mandated task only by deciding to make it ‘apolitical'”.

“This decision, though being viewed negatively by a segment of society and led to personal criticism, will facilitate in reinvigorating and strengthening democratic culture, assist in supporting state organs to effectively perform and deliver. Above all, this decision will help enhance army’s prestige in the long term,” he was quoted as saying by Geo News.

The outgoing military chief mentioned that the navy has loved unmatched respect and belief of the Pakistani nation all through the nation’s historical past.

“Army’s positive and constructive role in Pakistan’s national security and development has always received unwavering public support. I believe that public support and affinity towards the armed forces tends to erode when the military is seen to be involved in political affairs, and, therefore, I considered it prudent to shield Pakistan Army from the vagaries of politics in Pakistan,” mentioned Gen Bajwa.

He assured that regardless of the “some criticism and undue vilification of the armed forces through mass propaganda and meticulously crafted false narratives”, the establishment will stay dedicated to its apolitical position.

“I am certain that this political quarantine of the armed forces will auger well for Pakistan in the long term by fostering political stability and strengthening the army-to-people bond,” mentioned Gen Bajwa.

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