Who Fired Who?
The Rules of Business 1973 dictates how the Federal secretariat, comprising of Ministries and Divisions, operates. It includes Schedules that clearly delineate hiring/firing responsibility by including a list of cases that are to be submitted to the Prime Minister/President for his orders.
Schedule 5-A, Rule (15)(g)(h) lists cases to be submitted to the Prime Minister for his orders. These include cases of appointments/dismissal of officers in the armed forces falling under the Defense Division. It clearly states that the Prime Minister appoints officers of and above the rank of Captain in the Navy, Colonel in the Army, and Group Captain in the Air Force. It is a general principle that an appointing authority is the dismissing authority. For instance, if I was hired by a CEO of a company, the manager of security cannot fire me, especially without consultation with the CEO.
So the Chief of Army Staff can only dismiss a Major or Lieutenant Colonel from service without having to consult the Prime Minister. He does have to consult with the Defense Secretary though for his hiring and firing decisions. The following color-coded list classifies each rank by appointing/dismissing authority:
- 2nd Lieutenant
- Lieutenant Colonel
- Major General
- Lieutenant General
*Red = COAS/Defense Secretary,
*Green = Exclusively Prime Minister,
*Blue = President on advice of PM.
Six senior officers of the Armed Forces were dismissed last week. These include a Lieutenant General, a Major General, and three Brigadiers. The dismissal of The Lieutenant General required the President’s orders (on advice of the Prime Minister), whereas the remainder were dismissed by the orders of the Prime Minister. The COAS could get into trouble if he acted in violation of the Rules of Business 1973 and dismissed these senior commissioned officers on his own. The truth is, he did not dismiss these senior commissioned officers on his own, as portrayed by some boot-licking politicos and media.
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