Veteran leader of Pakistan People’s Party and former Interior Minister Maj Gen (r) Naseerullah Khan dies
PESHAWAR – Veteran leader of Pakistan People’s Party and former Interior Minister Maj Gen (r) Naseerullah Khan Babar passed away due to protracted illness in Combined Military Hospital here on Monday.
Maj Gen (r) Naseerullah Babar was a retired two star rank Major General in the Pakistan Army, and the former Interior Minister of Pakistan. His family is from the Babar tribe of Pakhtuns and hails from the village of Pirpai in district Nowshehra. Babar was a former Pakistan Army general, a former Inspector General Frontier Corps and a senior central leader of Pakistan People’s Party. He was born in 1928, in Ismail Khel near Akora Khattak, Nowshehra, Khyber Pukhtunkhwa.
He also remained Governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa from 1975-1977 under Zulfikar Ali Bhutto government and was Interior Minister in the second term of PPP government from 1993-1996. He was Special Assistant in Benazir Bhutto’s first government from 1988-1990.
His early education was from Presentation Convent School during 1935 to 1939. From 1939 to 1941 he attended Burn Hall then located at Baramula and Sarinagar. The school was subsequently shifted to Abbottabad after partition. He also attended Prince of Wales Royal Indian Military College in Dheradun and joined the Pakistan Army in 1948. He was from the first PMA long course which graduated in 1950.
In his long career in the Army, Babar served in the Artillery Corps and Aviation. During the 1965 war with India, Babar single headedly captured an entire Indian company of soldiers (over 70 POWs) and was awarded Sitari-e-Jurat for this action. In the 1971 war, he commanded an artillery brigade in support of 23 Division and later commanded an infantry brigade until he was wounded and evacuated from the battlefield. He also had the distinction of being awarded SJ & Bar.
In 1972, he was appointed Inspector General Frontier Corps. He resigned from the Army in 1974 while commanding an infantry division and was appointed Governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He joined the Pakistan People’s Party in 1977 after the arrest of Bhutto. He famously threw away his Hilal-i-Jurat (with bar) and other army medals at the presiding officer of a military tribunal, when Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was hanged by the military regime of Gen Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq.