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Pakistan Army has Pakhtuns in sizeable numbers: Gen Shaheen

January 11, 2019

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A student speaks during the question-answer session at the Corps Headquarters, Peshawar, on Thursday.
A student speaks during the question-answer session at the Corps Headquarters, Peshawar, on Thursday.

PESHAWAR: Corps Commander of Peshawar Lieutenant General Shaheen Mazhar Mehmud emphatically dispelled the impression on Thursday that Pakhtuns were ‘less resourceful and less embraced in national policies’, saying a sizeable number of Pakhtuns were serving in the Pakistan Army and that only the people from this ethnic background could be seen from Gilgit-Baltistan to Karachi.

During a question-answer session with the students of University of Peshawar at the Peshawar Corps headquarters here, the corps commander said Pakhtuns owned and handled privately-owned transport vehicles across the country, while major ministries and portfolios were held by them.

“They (Pakhtuns) are the only one ethnicity to be seen from Gilgit-Baltistan to Karachi,” he said while answering a question.

UoP students visit Peshawar Corps Headquarters

According to the statement issued by the UoP on Thursday, the corps commander asked students to understand the modern demands of a nation state, where territorial integrity and territorial well-being come first.

He dismissed the case of missing persons and asked students to understand that the militants’ splinter groups operated from other side of the border and that majority of missing persons were active from across the border.

“One example is the recent Karachi Chinese consulate attack, where reported missing persons were found to be armed terrorists,” he said.

The students also visited historic places, including Yadgar-i-Shuhada, Bala Hisar Fort, Michni Post, Khyber Rifles and GRC auditorium.

The visit was jointly organised by the Pakistan Army and UoP.

These visits have been taking place since May 2018 on specific days of a week, said the UoP statement.

Pro-Vice Chancellor Prof Mohammad Abid led 300 students and faculty members to Yadagar-i-Shuhda on behalf of the UoP.

Brigadier Shakir welcomed the delegation at GRC, where the pro-VC laid a wreath at the memorial to pay homage to the 4,900 martyrs of 11 Corps Peshawar.

A special prayer was offered at the memorial for the country’s stability and prosperity.

Led by UoP focal person Arif Khan, the students visited Michini post, where wing commander Colonel Umair on behalf of the Khyber Rifles commandment gave a multimedia presentation on Khyber Pass to students.

During the question-answer session, the wing commander said tax collections on the Torkham border was on the rise.

About the border fencing tasks, he said fencing needed a lot of toil on part of soldiers, who had to defeat the weather, hard terrain and load.

The students later visited the Khyber Rifles’ officers mess, where traditional Mehsud, Khattak, Bhittani and Chitrali troupes presented folk dances.

They also visited the historic picture gallery along with fabulous Lady Diana room.

Later, Lieutenant Colonel Ahfaz highlighted the contours of the Pakistan Army’s endeavours from fencing, reducing militant threats, hybrid war, development projects, kinetic and non-kinetic operations.

Later, Corps Commander Lieutenant General handed over a souvenir to the pro-VC.

The students will later tour the historical places of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, said the statement.

Published in Dawn, January 11th, 2019

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