What is Pakistan Army (Amendment) Act, 2020?

Here is all you need to know about the Army (Amendment) Act, 2020.

Army

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government is all set to amend the Army Act in order to grant an extension in service to the Chief of Army Staff (COAS). Here is all you need to know about the amendment which is going to take place.

The bill to be presented in the Lower House today will seek to amend the laws governing Pakistan Army, Pakistan Air Force, and Pakistan Navy.

According to the draft bill, the government has included a new section 8A in the Pakistan Army Act, 1952 (XXXIX of 1952) by amending Section 8.

The retirement age and service limits prescribed for a General, under the Rules and Regulations made under this Act, shall not be applicable to the Chief of the Army Staff

In the Pakistan Army Act, 1952 (XXXIX of 1952), hereinafter referred to as the said Act, in section 8,-

(a) in subsection (2), after the words “Pakistan Army”, comma and the words ”duly appointed by the President, in accordance with Article 243 of the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan,

(b) After subsection (2), the following new subsection shall be inserted, namely:-

(2A)” Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee” means an officer who has been appointed as the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, by the President, in accordance with Article 243 of the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, read with section 8D;”.

Read More: Will PML-N & PPP let PTI amend the law to facilitate COAS extension?

A new chapter will be inserted called Chapter IA in which appointment of the Chief of the Army Staff and the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee has been proposed.

1: 8A deals with the Appointment of the Chief of the Army Staff which states that “the President shall, on the advice of the Prime Minister, appoint a general as the Chief of the Army Staff, for a tenure of three (03) years. The terms and conditions of the Chief of the Army Staff shall be determined by the President, on the advice of the Prime Minister.

2: 8B deals with reappointment or extension in tenure of Chief of the Army Staff which states that “Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act or any other law for the time being in force, the President, on the advice of the PM, may reappoint the Chief of the Army Staff for additional tenure of three (03) years, or extend the tenure(s) of the Chief of the Army Staff up to three (03) years, on such terms and conditions, as may be determined by the President on the advice of the Prime Minister, in the national security interest or exigencies, from time to time”.

Read more: Gen Bajwa’s Tenure Extended for 6 Months: PM Khan Labels Proceedings as Clash of Institutions

Moreover, no one can challenge the appointment, reappointment or extension of the Chief of the Army Staff in any court of law.

Under 8B, a Section 2 has also been included which states that “Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act or any other law, or any order or judgment of any Court, the appointment, reappointment or extension of the Chief of the Army Staff, or the exercise of discretion by the appointing authority in this regard, shall not be called into question before any Court on any ground whatsoever”.

“The retirement age and service limits prescribed for a General, under the Rules and Regulations made under this Act, shall not be applicable to the Chief of the Army Staff, during his tenure of appointment, reappointment, or extension, subject to a maximum age of sixty-four (64) years. Throughout such tenure, the Chief of the Army Staff shall continue to serve as a General in the Pakistan Army.”

Read more: Khan eager while Opposition hesitate to extend Bajwa’s tenure

The President may, on the advice of the PM, appoint a Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, from amongst Generals in the Pakistan Army, Admirals in the Pakistan Navy, or Air Chief Marshals in the Pakistan Air Force, for a tenure of three (03) years.

The government has also proposed amending 176A in which after the word “Army”, the words and commas “including, appointment, reappointment, extension or retirement of the Chief of the Army Staff and/or the Chairman. Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee”, shall be added.

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