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Process for appointment of next COAS begins?

It is expected that the names will be announced on Tuesday or Wednesday. Once the PM's Office approves the names, the list will be forwarded to the President's Secretariat for ratification.

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Reports have emerged that the process for the appointment of the next Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS) has officially begun as the Prime Minister’s Office has received the summary regarding the matter.

According to the details, a meeting is allegedly underway to discuss the names of the next army chief and the chairman joint chiefs of staff committee. PM Shehbaz chaired the meeting with Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, and Law Minister Sardar Ayaz Sadiq also present.

Read more: Undesirable hype over the new COAS

The list of finalists for the coveted post includes senior army officials and they are Lt Gen Asim Munir, Lt Gen Sahir Shamshad Mirza, Lt Gen Azhar Abbas, Lt Gen Nauman Mehmood, and Lt Gen Faiz Hamid.

It is expected that the names will be announced on Tuesday or Wednesday. Once the PM’s Office approves the names, the list will be forwarded to the President’s Secretariat for ratification. It will be then sent back to the PM’s Office for an official announcement.

COAS Bajwa’s retirement

COAS Bajwa is set to retire soon. He is currently on his farewell tour across Pakistan. His retirement had become politically controversial, especially between PTI and the PML-N government, as there were claims that the COAS may ask for another extension. However, COAS and the Army rejected the rumors and asserted that the retirement will be on time.

Recently, PTI leader and President of Pakistan, Dr. Arif Alvi said that he will follow through on Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s advice regarding the appointment of the COAS. While talking to his close aides, President Alvi said that he could not create hurdles in the much-anticipated process.

“I do not have the legal authority to stop the prime minister’s advice; I have never interfered in the affairs of the state,” President Alvi said.

Read more: Will retire on time – COAS Gen Bajwa

Similarly, PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry said the president would fulfill his constitutional duty when it comes to the crucial appointment. He also revealed that PTI Chairman and former Prime Minister Imran Khan will also support any decision taken by the President.