President Arif Alvi signed on Thursday the Pakistan Army Amendment Bill into law, following its passage from the National Assembly and the Senate.
The amendments empower the prime minister to grant extension to the army, navy and air force chiefs. They could serve their institutions till they are 64 years of age.
The bill was passed by the National Assembly on January 7 and by the Senate on January 8. The government intends to submit the new documents in the Supreme Court.
Prime Minister Imran Khan had recommended reappointment of General Qamar Javed Bajwa as the army chief for another three years on August 19, 2019. The president had granted him the extension.
However, the extension was challenged on the grounds that it was contrary to Article 243(4)(b) of the constitution. The case was initially filed by the Jurists’ Foundation but after it asked to withdraw the case, the Supreme Court decided to take it up itself.
The apex court had explored the scope of Article 243 and the Army Act, 1952.
On November 28, it had extended General Bajwa’s tenure by six months — till May — and ordered the government to make a law regulating such appointments.