LHC admits plea seeking appointment of army chief on seniority basis.

The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Tuesday accepted for hearing a petition calling for the appointment of the army chief to be made on the basis of seniority.

Justice Faisal Zaman Khan will preside over the hearing on Wednesday, November 16.

Incumbent Chief of the Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa is set to retire on November 28 later this month. As the date of the most pivotal appointment comes closer, conjectures have been on the rise regarding it.

Earlier, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif said that the selection process for the army chief began around November 18. A summary of five names was forwarded by the Ministry of Defence to the prime minister who selected one name for the coveted post.

The petition, submitted by Advocate Najma Ahmed in the LHC today, named the federal government, central law secretary of Islamabad, provincial secretary establishment of Lahore, provincial secretary law of Lahore, and senior lawyer Aitzaz Ahsan as respondents.

The plea, a copy of which is available with Dawn.com, said that the procedure of the army chief's appointment was 'unlawful and unconstitutional'.

It laid the grounds that the appointment was discriminatory and a 'patent' violation of Article 25 of the Constitution. 'The said act of appointment is unfair, unreasonable, arbitrary, and a violation of the law.'

The petition highlighted that the Chief Justice of Pakistan and all the high court judges were appointed on the basis of seniority but the same was ignored in the selection of the chief of army staff.

'It is, therefore, most respectfully prayed to direct the respondents to appoint the senior most persons as army chief,' the petition added.

Process of appointing army chief

According to Article 243(3) of the Constitution, the president appoints the services chiefs on the recommendation of the prime...

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