By Lt Col (R) Muhammad Arshad Meer (2nd SSC)
Editor’s Note: Lt Col Arshad Meer was commissioned in 7 Baluch Regt in July 1972 and during his early service was transferred to 34 AK. He was born in Quetta and after the retirement, he chose to stay in Quetta but has shifted to Islamabad 2 years back.
I have the honour to serve with Lt Gen Ahmad Jamal (Late) as his OC FIU in Karachi (Corps Int Bn was raised later) in 1981-82. Once during a Corps exercise in Gadap area near Karachi, he called me for an evening walk. We walked about 3 km away from the field HQ without any security arrangement as those days used to be much safer. We saw a person walking alone in the fields who looked like a soldier. The Corps Commander asked me to inquire about him. I asked the man to come to us. He flatly refused and rather asked us to come to him. We went to him without disclosing our identity.
The General asked him, “Who are you? Why are you walking alone in the fields?”
He said that he was a soldier and had come in the fields for just ‘dil-peshori’ and to perform the ‘call of nature’ as well.
The General said to me, “Arshad, note down his particulars and inform his CO as well about gross violation of SOPs. Also tell the CO to see me tomorrow.”
Meanwhile, having assessed soldier’s aggressive and insolent attitude towards us, I immediately disclosed our identity. He immediately came to ‘shun’ and requested the General not to mention the matter to his CO. The Commander promised not to inform his CO but said that he would punish him personally the next morning.
The Sepoy replied,
The General gave a big laugh and while departing asked him about the standard of food in his unit.
The Sepoy replied,
The General asked in a surprised tone, “How is it possible?”
The soldier said,
General Ahmad Jamal again laughed loudly, shook hands with the sepoy and directed me not to report the matter to his CO.
However, the next day he did ask a staff officer to get the punishment record of that ‘cruel’ CO’s unit.
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