Gen Bajwa hands over ‘baton of command’ to Gen Asim Munir
Former chief of the army staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa on Tuesday handed over the “baton of command” to newly appointed COAS Gen Asim Munir in the ‘change of command’ ceremony at General Headquarters (GHQ).
General Syed Asim Munir has become the 17th chief of the army staff (COAS).
Addressing the ceremony, General Qamar Javed Bajwa said that, “I am grateful to Allah Almighty for my lifelong association with the Pakistan Army, who gave me the opportunity to serve in the army and gave me a purposeful life.”
Before handing over the command, Gen Bajwa congratulated his successor Gen Asim Munir for being promoted to the four star rank and as the head of the army.
“I too will go into anonymity soon but my spiritual connection will always remain with the Pakistan Army,” he added.
Gen Bajwa visited the Yadgar-e-Shuhda for the last time as chief of army staff. Gen Munir had accompanied him during the visit.
The chiefs of all armed forces, senior civil and military officers participated in the ceremony, federal ministers, diplomats and journalists were also the part of the prestigious ceremony.
Gen Bajwa has retired from the highest military post and General Syed Asim Munir took over the leadership of Pakistan Army.
In the ceremony, the outgoing army chief hands over the baton, also known as the Malacca Cane, with his eyes riveted to the eyes of his successor as if telling him to guard the honour of the baton with his life in the darkest as well as the brightest times ahead.
The moment when ‘baton of command’ was handed over to the new chief of army staff at a ceremony held at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi.
Who is Lt. Gen Asim Munir?
Lt Gen Asim Munir is currently the most senior general; he was promoted to the rank of two stars General in September 2018. His tenure as Lieutenant General will come to its end on November 27 as he assumed the charge after the two months of promotion.
Lt. Gen Asim Munir joined the army service through the Officers Training School (OTS) at Mangla and was commissioned in the Frontier Force Regiment.
He has been a close aide of the current Chief of Army Staff ever since he assumed command of the troops in Force Command Northern Areas as a Brigadier, where General Qamar Javed Bajwa was then Commander X Corps.
Later, he was appointed DG Military Intelligence in early 2017 and made ISI chief in October the following year. However, his tenure as the top intelligence officer was short-lived as he was replaced by Lt. Gen. Faiz Hameed within eight months of the service at the insistence of the then Prime Minister Imran Khan.
He was posted as Gujranwala Corps Commander before being transferred as Quartermaster General at GHQ where he held the post for two years.
Lt-Gen Munir is the recipient of the Sword of Honour from the 17th course of the Officers Training School in Mangla. Also, he is the recipient of the Hilal-i-Imtiaz.
He is a ‘Hafiz-e-Quran’ who memorised the Quran during his posting in Saudi Arabia as Lt Colonel.