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The Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, has a unique distinction of having the opportunity to appoint four army chiefs in his three tenures of prime ministership. Incidentally, his relations with none of them can be called happy. Far from it. In his previous tenures, he appointed Asif Nawaz Janjua in 1991, Waheed Kakar in 1993, Pervez Musharraf in 1998 and Raheel Sharif in 2013. General Raheel Sharif is set to retire on November 29, 2016 and has not expressed any interest in an extension. The frontrunners for the top army chief post seem to be Multan Corps Commander Lt Gen Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmed, Inspector General, Training and Evaluation Lt Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chief of General Staff Lt Gen Zubair Hayat and Bahawalpur Corps Commander Lt Gen Javed Iqbal Ramday. What would be the qualities in an Army Chief that the Prime Minister of Pakistan would look for? Obviously, loyalty and a non-political disposition would key in as primary factors. But before deciding, it would be pertinent for the Prime Minister to analyze and examine his previous choices given the ultimate outcome that he faced after appointing them.

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