Saturday, September 6, 2008

Farewell One Stars

Finally it is 6 September 2009 - the day all those listed herein under finally leave Pakistan Army from its rolls and join the crowd in the street. It has been 34 years since we joined PMA and just looks like a twinkle of an eye. From the pinnacle of our youth, we step down with grey hair and lot of sweet nostalgic memories of our stay in the Khakis. Look how I changed and how the rest did. We wish our comrades still in uniform the very best of luck and hope to see them rising up the ladder with much pride, honour and dignity. So it is adios from us - finally fading away in history....


6th of September 1965 was perhaps the turning point for many of the children of ten years to one day join Pakistan Army - at least it was for me. Because since that day onwards, I always dreamt of wearing the khaki  every day and night. And it was a dream come true when I was selected for the 55th PMA Long Course some ten years thereafter. And now after wearing the Khaki and the Camouflage for almost 33 years, it is 6 September once again when of the remaining few one stars, few are finally taking their boots off and stepping back to the the civil life - which though would be much different now after more than three decades, and be part of all those who shed away the uniform in ranks of majors and colonels. 

Those who are bidding farewell to arms include Arjumand, Tahir Kahloon, Jalal, Munir (took an earlier relief), Abdur Rehman, Akhtar Nawaz, Bajwa, Akhtar Abbas, Qayyum and Rao Jamil (anyone left??) - Look at the above young and energetic faces and then look back in a mirror and find out what have we all lost and gained.

Inam Karim sought premature retirement awhile ago, while Zuhr Khan, who still had a year to go, has also decided to say farewell to arms recently. 33 years has been a long innings and those who are taking their boots off bow in front of the Almighty Allah for have us brought to this honour and prominence. May Allah bless on those who are leaving His infinite and countless blessings as were showered all along and bless post retirement settlement with even more dignity, honour and respect. Ameen

5 September 2008 - Farewell to arms

So now, a few are left behind who would leave next year - and then a few would be left to pitch themselves against very heavy odds to climb up the ultimate ladder - who succeeds, only time will tell. But we all sincerely pray that at least one does reach there....

Updated: 15 July 2009: Farewell Zahir Khan:
The remaining one stars of the course also hung their uniforms a year later - thus leaving behind the two stars to battle for the three or even four stars.

Here is how Zahir Khan describes his farewell by his unit:
As I hanged my boots on 14th July 2009, the day came with mixed emotions; the joy of accomplishment and sorrow of parting with a way of life. The last about three and half decade of my life time had been devoted to the profession of arms. It carried all the leadership challenges, career aspirations, achievements with occasional disappointments etc. Notwithstanding few slips here and there, it had been an era to be cherished and to be proud of. One of the most significant achievements of this time has been the unflinching comradeship of my colleagues in arms. It withstood the test of time and was always there to push me when I was dragging myself. I always felt a supporting pat from my friends radiating reassuring confidence when the chips were down. During various stages of the career, I along with my family always cherished the company of my PMA colleagues. This forum was the most comfortable one for us and always had nostalgic feelings. During my stay at Lahore for the last two years, this bondage was further strengthened with some 50 plus colleagues around. I expect and hope that this spirit would continue for times to come.
I spent the last day of my service at Okara with my Regiment in the capacity of the Colonel of the Regiment. It was a unique emotional experience to take off the uniform at the place where I started the career some 32 years back. I thank all the good wishes expressed on the day by various means by my friends and colleagues. Most of the messages congratulated me while welcoming to the new phase of life. All of them reiterated the strong bondage of friendship, others praying for good health and prosperity while few rendered some good advice. I value all these expressions of affectionate concern for me.

Assalamo Allaikum WRWBH! Jalal the Magnificent, Ramadan Mubarik, Beseeching Allahu Taala for your enduring vitality, prosperity, secure beliefs and Eeman-e-Mohkim, I express my very sincere THANKS for the 6 September Special, Photos say it all "SABAAT AIK TAGHIUR KO HEY ZAMANEY MEIN". Please join me in praying that May Allahu Taala in His Boundless Benevolence fashions the approaching new track of life (a la Rail Train, track changes yet the train goes on, so does the life) for all those (and families) who have been shown the signal for the change (no question of retirement, as we were never tired in the first place so RE can not be there) the most compensating, the most flourishing, the most joyous, and exceptionally satisfying POST UNIFORM LIFE. May He in His Infinite Mercy fulfill all our wishes and supplications and May He dispense us with consistent fortitude of definite conviction to live with our ideals, standard and belief. Aameen.

As regards those who are "STILL IN" lets wish them all the best as I had done in my last mail (18 April), May one out of them goes ON to the pinnacle and be the SIPAH SALAR.

Time for little reflection, for all of us, it is a wonderful feeling, (somewhat strange as well) coupled with sadness to bid adieu to a TOTAL LIFE STYLE and distinctly developed, highly protective, extremely exclusive and slightly pampering culture. At the same time I feel, it is a moment of Thanksgiving and to bow in all humility before Allahu Taala for having given us strength, steadfastness and capability to fulfill successfully the obligations of OATH 
taken on that memorable day, 16 APRIL 1977. Coming out without a blemish involving two third of our life is no mean feat and what we have accomplished and achieved (By the Grace of Almighty) bears testimony to the fact. It is amazing how quickly the years have flown past? But it is a natural phenomenon and no one has ever escaped that. As mentioned earlier every thing is temporary and Eternity Belongs to Allahu Taala Alone. The most gratifying fact for all of us, however, should be that within our limits we did our best. We served with honour, conviction, absolute commitment and dignity. We were certainly not looked down upon by anyone, our associates, peers, subordinates and seniors. A genuine Sincerity of Purpose and Excellence of Execution were always and will remain there.

As we take off the "KHAKIS" we resolve that we shall always be ready to serve again if the CALL COMES, Our relation with Pak Army is unbreakable and 55TH would always remain our identity.


Jamil Bravo (Canada):
To All my friends saying Farewell to arms! Brothers! WE are all proud of you, you really deserve our salute as you successfully complete your 33 great years with one of the finest Army in the World. Serving in the military with all the honors, dignity and respect definitely needs hard work ,dedication and motivation, you all had that and showed with your actions, we all feel proud of you. Retiring from Army (or any profession) with honor and respect really makes you feel so great and so relaxed that after serving 33 years you feel you have achieved your goal/mission and handed over the flag to next generation without any spot on it. Keep it up stars*** of 55th. And welcome to the Retirees Club ,now you will have more time for yourself ,your better halves, your bright kids and more so for GOLF and buddies. Do not forget to exercise, you need it more now. Do not start another job immediately ,take some break and have a nice tour of the beautiful world waiting for you with your darling (wives). With lots of love and good wishes  

The webmaster on behalf of all those who retired on 6 September thank all course mates and specially Akhtar Nawaz Janjua and Jamil Bravo for their beautiful, very moving and sincere sentiments. We now pray for the best for those one stars left till next year and the two stars who have many more years and more stars awaiting them. Adios Khaki and Pakistan Army. ( Jalal HB )