KARACHI: Weeks after the news of the sacking of military officers was leaked to the press, Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) spokesperson Lieutenant General Asim Bajwa confirmed the suspension of the six army officers by the army chief as part of the “army’s aggressive pursuit of an anti-corruption drive”.
“These officers were dismissed, punished and sent home in a single related case,” Bajwa said during an interview with prime time television journalist Kamran Khan on Dunya TV, in a first official comment on the move.
Bajwa added that the action was taken after months of investigation.
Related: Two generals, four others fired for ‘corruption’
Answering a question about the army’s silence and the absence of an official version after the sackings, Bajwa maintained “such actions within the army are not made public anywhere in the world”.
“This news was not made public but was leaked days after the action was taken.”
“I did not deny the news at that time but as I told you, it is not the institutional policy to do so. A press release was issued in the National Logistics Cell (NLC) scam case because NLC was a public institution,” Bajwa told the show host.
The ISPR spokesman maintained the army already has a branch dedicated to investigate such activities and present its reports to COAS, who takes the required action.
General Raheel Sharif has strengthened this unit of army and is aggressively pursuing the anti-corruption drive, he added
Bajwa, however categorically denied ‘rumours’ about an inquiry against two retired lieutenant generals General Sajjad Ghani and General Naveed Zaman
“There is no inquiry against the two and everything circulating except what I have confirmed is a rumour,” said the army officer.
Answering queries about military courts, he told the show host that the 11 death sentences announced a day earlier have taken the total number of decided cases to 88 and expressed hope that all pending cases will be decided by January 2017, the end limit of military courts.
Related: Army chief approves death sentences of 11 ‘hardcore terrorists’ tried by military courts
“A total of 11 military courts are working across the country day in and day out but no decision is being taken without following due process or in haste,” claimed Bajwa.
He added that at least 207 cases are pending in military courts , 88 have been decided and some cases are in pipeline, which will be forwarded to the courts after apex committee and ministry of interior’s approval.