Coming from a celebrated martial race dynasty can often put a great deal of pressure on people to achieve. Success in that field is therefore doubly sweet when that destiny is fulfilled in a subsequent generation. One such example is
General Raheel Sharif
Coming from a celebrated martial race dynasty can often put a great deal of pressure on people to achieve. Success in that field is therefore doubly sweet when that destiny is fulfilled in a subsequent generation. One such example is Current Chief of the Army Staff of the Pakistan Army, General Raheel Sharif.
General Raheel Sharif was born on 16 June 1956 in Quetta to a family of prominent military background from Kunjah, District Gujrat. His father was Major Muhammad Sharif. His eldest brother was Major Shabbir Sharif, who was martyred in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 and received the Nishan-e-Haider posthumously. He is the youngest sibling among three brothers and two sisters. His other brother, Mumtaz Sharif, was a captain in the army. General Raheel Sharif is the nephew of Major Raja Aziz Bhatti Shaheed, another Nishan-e-Haider recipient, who fought in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965.
Raheel Sharif received his formal education from the Government College in Lahore and afterward attended the Pakistan Military Academy. After graduation in 1976, he was commissioned into the 6th Battalion of the Frontier Force Regiment, where his elder brother had also served. He served as an adjutant to the Pakistan Military Academy and joined an infantry brigade in Gilgit. As a brigadier, he commanded two infantry brigades.
Subsequently, General Raheel Sharif was assigned command of the 11th Infantry Division in Lahore by General Pervez Musharraf. He was also the General Commanding Officer of an infantry division and Commandant of the Pakistan Military Academy. Following his promotion to Lieutenant General, General Raheel Sharif served as a corps commander for two years and then took over as Inspector General for Training and Evaluation in the Pakistan Army.
As the Inspector General for Training and Evaluation, he enhanced the military colleges in the country and provided unconventional training to the troops. He also dealt with the evaluation of military doctrines and war strategies with a view to shaping future training programmes. He changed the army's focus more towards carrying out counter-insurgency operations against Taliban militants.
General Raheel Sharif has played an important role in convincing other senior officers in the army that the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and assorted militants inside Pakistan are as much of a threat as India. However, General Raheel Sharif stressed that all possible threats will be dealt with accordingly, be it internally or externally.
On 27 November 2013, General Raheel Sharif was appointed as the 15th Chief of Army Staff of the Pakistan Army. He was elevated over two senior generals, Lieutenant General Haroon Aslam, a senior general, resigned over General Raheel Sharif's elevation and another senior general, Rashad Mahmood was appointed as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee. He is said to be uninterested in politics.
He is married and has three children, which include two sons and a daughter. In 2013, General Raheel Sharif was conferred with Nishan-e-Imtiaz (military).