Senators raise questions over Gen Rizwan Akhtar’s premature retirement

(THIS ARTICLE IS FROM THE ‘DAWN’ NEWS PAPER IN KARACHI PAKISTAN)

 

The premature retirement of former Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief Lt Gen Rizwan Akhtar echoed in the Senate on Tuesday as Senators raised question over the causes behind the sudden move.

Rizwan Akhtar on Saturday requested for early retirement from Pakistan Army citing “pressing personal commitments”.

He, in a letter, asked for “premature release” starting Oct 9, 2017, after nearly 35 years of active commissioned service in the armed forces.

Akhtar, who was replaced by Lt Gen Naveed Mukhtar as director general (DG) ISI, was posted as president of the National Defence University two weeks after Chief of Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa took oath last year.

JUI-F’sSenator Hafiz Hamdullah said was there any political party which could ask why a seasoned senior general opted for early retirement and what were the reasons behind this move.

Without naming Rizwan Akhtar, he raised the question that why a senior general who had served on a crucial post in Karachi resigned from his post.

He went on to say that no one will ask a question in this regard because all know that it might make “them” angry, putting their political career in jeopardy.

PPP’s Senator Saleem Zia said that people would be camping outside the residence of a minister had he or she resigned, but no one will ask a question if an army officer resigns.

No one will even dare to pass by the residence of that officer.