Pakistan Army denies launching anti-beard drive: Serious Violations of Approved Length

The NEWS: ISLAMABAD: As a retired Major of the Pakistan Army has accused the incumbent khaki leadership of following in the footsteps of General (R) Pervez Musharraf, who had literally launched a campaign against beards in the armed forces, military circles say the forced retirement of Major Zaheeruddin was an isolated action which was taken on disciplinary grounds and was not at all part of any drive against those sporting beards.

While seeking justice from the Lahore High Court’s Rawalpindi bench, led by Justice Ch Muhammad Younis, Major Zaheeruddin has challenged his forcible retirement, saying the action taken by his seniors was all because of his refusal to trim his beard which was strictly in accordance with the laid down Army rules and regulations. Justice Chaudhry has already admitted his petition and issued notice to the Ministry of Defence seeking reply.

According to Col (R) Inamur Rahim, the counsel for Major Zaheeruddin, his client was forcibly retired despite the fact that he was keeping beard in accordance with the Army Rules Instructions (AR(I) 684) that require the beard to remain within the limits of four fingers below the under chin. However, he said, since the khaki top brass seem to have launched an anti-beard drive in the Army, his client was told by his Brigade Commander and the General Officer Commanding in Lahore to trim down his beard, which he refused, and was subsequently sent home despite the fact that it was an unlawful command.

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