General Raheel Sharif’s Dignified Departure
The day of 29 November – the day General Raheel Sharif gracefully transferred power to General Qamar Javed Bajwa and stepped down amiably – will be remembered as a milestone in the strengthening of institution and system building in Pakistan. Power transition in any form is a difficult and challenging task. Unfortunately, there have been a few examples of smooth power transition in civil and military realms in Pakistan. But General Raheel Sharif has set an unprecedented example by announcing timely retirement despite tremendous calls for extension in service from general public. His services for Pakistan are comprised of a long list but the decision to step down as per schedule is the biggest contribution for strengthening of institution/ system in Pakistan. It is a universal truth that no individual is indispensable. Rather one man’s rule for longer period and extensions at the top level creates frustration among all ranks which proves counterproductive for the overall system and creates hurdles for prosperity and development.
On political front, after several ups and down in political history of Pakistan, finally a system has evolved which is strengthening democratic norms and values in Pakistan. The political instability due to military interventions in the past has crippled the economy and development of Pakistan.
Under visionary leadership of General Raheel Sharif, military did not intervene in political affairs of various political parties despite calls for martial law and military intervention during dharna politics in 2014. Although, the political system is yet evolving but General Raheel Sharif has set a direction for peace and development by taking strict actions for eradication of militancy and terrorism in Pakistan. Before his retirement he has ensured implementation of National Action Plan in letter and spirit. Karachi considered as economic hub of Pakistan, was unstable due to activities of RAW in the city. General Raheel took bold steps in order to counter RAW activities in Sindh. The development China Pakistan Economic Corridor was closely monitored by ex-COAS and he ensured to overcome every hurdle in operationalization of the said project.
In 2013, when General Raheel was appointed as COAS, Pakistan was going through extreme crises both internally and externally. Most of international reports had termed Pakistan as ‘most dangerous country’ and ‘failing state’ in the World.
But after assuming the command of prestigious Armed Forces of Pakistan, General Raheel took so many commendable steps which have ensured a bright and prosperous future of Pakistan. Since 2013, the overall image of Pakistan Armed Forces has been improved nationally and internationally and our Armed Forces have regained the lost image and fame after successfully clearing FATA from militants. General Raheel’s personal involvement for successful operationalization of CPEC, eradication of terrorism at large scale, strengthening of ties with emerging powers including China, Russia and Turkey and decision to timely step down are some of the services which will be harbinger of peace, stability and strengthening of institution and system in Pakistan. His predecessor General Qamar Bajwa has to follow suit in order to keep Pakistan on track of peace and prosperity. General Raheel has performed his duty in best possible manner which has not only brought fame and good name to his family but it has helped strengthening positive image of Armed forces at national and international level. He will be remembered as main contributing factor in bringing back Pakistan on track of peace and stability.
Article by: Waheed Gul @waheedgul
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