India is afraid of Raheel Sharif

India is afraid of Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif, it is the only reason New Delhi evacuated border areas and Indian border forces is on high alert.

India is keeping its guard up because of the assessment that Pakistan army chief General Raheel Sharif may unleash “some cross-border action-plan” in the run-up to his November end scheduled retirement, Times of India said in his report.

The Indian security establishment feels Gen Sharif, who has a strong anti-India agenda, is unlikely to go home quietly after Thursday’s “surgical strikes”. Having projected himself as a crusader against terrorism and corruption, often overruling PM Nawaz Sharif on several issues, Gen Sharif is “capable” of going in for a strong counter-move against India to redeem his legacy, say Indian officials.

Nawaz Sharif, of course, would like to see the back of Gen Sharif, with four Lt-Generals in the reckoning to succeed him. If Nawaz actually succeeds in this endeavor, Lt Gen Javed Iqbal Ramday, commanding the 31 Corps at Bahawalpur, could take over the reins of the Army, says Indian media.

“Ramday is third in seniority among the four. But his family has political links with Nawaz’s Pakistan Muslim League (N),” an Indian official said. The other three Lt Gens are Zubair Mahmood Hayat (chief of general staff), Ishfaq Nadeem Ahmed (chief of the 2 Corps at Multan) and Qamar Javed Bajwa (I-G training and evaluation at the GHQ).

“Gen Sharif and Nawaz Sharif hate each other. This aura of invincibility and greatness that Gen. Sharif built for himself received a setback with this attack (India’s surgical strikes),” said former Indian ambassador to Pakistan G Parthasarathy.

“Given Gen Sharif ‘s unpredictability the threat is he might do something. India should be prepared,” he added.

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