Friday, February 22, 2008

President Pervez Musharraf

Pervez Musharraf, the second of three brothers, was born to an educated Syed family on August 11, 1943 in Delhi. After the creation of Pakistan the family chose to settle in Karachi. President Musharraf’s father Syed Musharraf Uddin, a graduate of Aligarh University, served in the Civil Services, Delhi. After partition, he joined the Foreign Department and retired as Director, Foreign Affairs. His mother received her Master’s degree from Lucknow University.

The President had the opportunity of spending his early life (1949-1956) in Turkey and can, consequently, converse fluently in Turkish language. President Musharraf attended renowned Educational Institutions of Pakistan like Saint Patrick’s High School, Karachi and Forman Christian Collage, Lahore.

He joined the Pakistan Military Academy in 1961 and was commissioned in an elite Artillery Regiment in 1964. He saw action in 1965 war as a young officer in the Khem Karan, Lahore and Sialkot Sectors with a self propelled Artillery Regiment. He was awarded Imtiazi Sanad for gallantry. He later volunteered and served for seven years in the Special Service Group "Commandos". He also participated in the 1971 war as Company Commander in a Commando Battalion.

President Musharraf has the privilege of commanding two self-propelled Artillery Regiments. As a Brigadier, he had the distinction of commanding an Infantry Brigade as well as Armoured Division Artillery. On promotion to the rank of Major General on 15th January 1991, he was given the command of an Infantry Division and later of a prestigious strike Corps as Lieutenant General on 21st October 1995.

President Musharraf has served on various important staff and instructional appointments during his career. These include Deputy Military Secretary at the Military Secretary’s Branch, member of Directing Staff both at the Command and Staff College, Quetta and the National Defence College. He has also remained the Director General Military Operations at the General Headquarters.

President Pervez Musharraf was promoted to the rank of General on 7th October 1998 and appointed Chief of Army Staff. He was given the additional charge of Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee on 9th April 1999.

A natural sportsman, who has always loved the outdoors and spends most of his leisure time playing Squash, Badminton or Golf. The President also takes keen interest in water sports, is a enthusiastic canoeist and loves to sail. An avid reader he is well versed in Military History, being his favourite subject. President Pervez Musharraf took oath as President of Pakistan on June 20, 2001.

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