ISLAMABAD, Nov 12: A legal adviser of the Ex-Servicemen Society has criticised the recent statement of the army chief in which he advised institutions not to cross the limits prescribed in the Constitution and has filed an application in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) for early disposal of the matter relating to extension given to Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani.
A division bench comprising Justice Mohammad Anwar Khan Kasi and Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui will take up the application on Tuesday.
In a statement issued through the Inter-Services Public Relations on Nov 5, Gen Kayani said: “No individual or institution has the monopoly to decide what is right or wrong in defining the ultimate national interest. It should emerge only through a consensus, and all Pakistanis have a right to express their opinions.”
The legal adviser, Col (retd) Inamur Rahim, had filed a petition in the IHC in September against the extension in the service of army chief, but Chief Justice Iqbal Hameedur Rehman dismissed it on Sept 24, citing Section 3 of Article 199 of the Constitution, which says that the high courts could not hear cases pertaining to the service of armed forces personnel.
Then Advocate Rahim filed an intra-court appeal against the said order which is pending before the IHC.
In the recent application, he says the army chief who is on alleged illegal extension even after crossing the age of superannuation, issued a “political statement” which disturbed the civil society.
“Had he ever been a person subject to the Army Act he would not have dared to issue a statement of that kind in violation of the oath of office of a legitimate chief of army staff.”
The application said the civil society and ex-servicemen society disapproved Gen Kayani’s statement.
In the appeal filed against the army chief’s extension, Advocate Rahim contended that the incumbent COAS was not subject to the Army Act, 1952, as he had attained 60 years of age on April 20, 2012, after which no-one could serve in the army. After reaching the age of superannuation, the army chief is a stranger to the seat.
The appeal pointed out that because of the three-year extension to the army chief, 24 lieutenant generals were deprived of their legitimate right of promotion.
It requested the court to set aside the order of a single-bench and declare Gen Kayani’s extension illegal.