Apparently former president Pervez Musharraf is not quite charmed by incumbent Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Ashfaq Pervez Kayani. It was quite a shift from the days of reflective pride, when he used to say he was sure he had given the command of the army to an able and professional man.

Indeed, the transfer event itself had been pretty thespian. If not, there wouldn’t have been a formal ceremony: normally, the outgoing chief works his full office hours on his last day and doesn’t go to office the next day. In the very next day, the new chief simply shows up for work.

With the incumbent stepping forward to take baton thrust towards him by the generalissimo, the ceremony that did take place had plenty of ritualistic flourishes.

Musharraf might have died a little inside the moment he gave the command away, something that even the roughest detractors of General Kayani wouldn’t say would quite be the case when he retires.

It seemed that all the goodwill have been changed in the present scenario. About the wrongdoings in the business of General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani’s brother, Musharraf while interviewing refused to comment without having proper information.

At the same time, he praised for DG ISI Ahmed Shuja Pasha, terming him a good human being and straight-talker. In his view, Pasha is a trustworthy man.

You must remember that this interview was given before news of General Pasha not getting an extension came out. He opined that Pasha should be get extension.

The significant question is that why the shift happened. Does Pervez Musharraf believe that perhaps the real centre of power in the country is now the head of ISI? It is vital to mention here that Kayani was also served one-time head of the spy agency.

This is a stark reminder of sub-continental power structures, if this is so. What will be in mind of Pervez Musharraf when Lt. Gen. Zaheerul Islam will take the charge of the post? Will he spend his next life quietly in luxurious flat of London or Dubai?

Such is life in this neck of the woods.

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