Imran Khan: ISI chief appointment; Rift between Pakistan PM Imran Khan, army chief? | World News – Times of India

NEW DELHI: Differences have emerged between Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and the country’s powerful army over the appointment of the new ISI chief, according to media reports.
Last week, the army had cleared the name of Lt Gen Nadeem Anjum as the new Director-General of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), replacing Lt Gen Hameed.
According to reports, Imran has insisted that Lt Gen Hameed should continue as ISI chief in view of the volatile situation in neighbouring Afghanistan.
Pakistan PM’s aide on political affairs Amir Dogar said Imran expressed this to army chief General Qamar Bajwa during a meeting on Monday.
“He [Imran] was of the opinion that the government wanted to take all institutions on board. The body language of the prime minister was quite positive and he seemed confident,” he added.
Rumours about a lack of consensus between the civil and military leadership over the crucial post gained traction due to an unusual delay in the release of notification confirming Lt Gen Anjum’s appointment.
The appointment of ISI director general is a prerogative of the Pakistan prime minister. But the PM usually picks the spymaster after consultation with the army chief and the process does not take long after the names are recommended by the army.
Meanwhile, the Imran government tried to play down rumours of a rift over the matter.
Information minister Fawad Chaudhry said the process of consultation between PM Khan and General Javed Bajwa “has been completed” and the process of a fresh appointment “is underway”, reported Dawn.
He was also quizzed for his earlier statement that a legal process is being followed for the appointment as per the Constitution and law. To that, he merely said confusion has been created by the media.
Experts told Dawn that the procedure to appoint ISI chief is neither mentioned in the Constitution nor the Army Act.
The experts said all past appointments were made as per traditions under which the army chief proposes three names to the prime minister, who then makes the final decision.
The outgoing spymaster Hameed was appointed to the post on June 16, 2019 in a military shake-up.
He had rushed to Afghanistan when the government formation talks between the Taliban and Haqqanis went sour, resulting in a scuffle during which Mullah Baradar got injured.
During his visit to Kabul, he told the media in a brief chat that “everything will be ok” in Afghanistan, when there were rumours about differences among Taliban ranks due to delay in the announcement of the government.

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