Islamabad: The promotion of 12 major generals have set the stage for the major reshuffle in Pakistan's top military brass.

Pakistan army on Tuesday announced the promotion of 12 major generals to the rank of lieutenant general, setting the stage for a major reshuffle in the top brass ahead of the change in command at the end of next month, reported Dawn.

The latest promotion is seen as one of the more consequential decisions by Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa ahead of his retirement as the 12 promoted officers would form a major chunk of the team that the new chief would inherit in November.

It is rare to see such a big number of promotions to the rank of lieutenant general at one time. The promotions in the army had been overdue for almost a year though these elevations are normally said to be based on vacancies.

The 12 newly promoted generals would be taking up the positions vacated due to the retirement of three lieutenant generals in mid of October 2021, one in July this year and five at the end of September, reported Dawn.

Two more generals were promoted in anticipation of the promotion of two lieutenant generals to fill the impending four-star vacancies due to the upcoming retirement of Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee Gen Nadeem Raza and Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa.

Promotions at this level in the army are the sole prerogative of the COAS. But traditionally the chiefs hold informal consultations with other senior generals while taking these decisions, reported Dawn.

Among the newly promoted officers, a few of them had worked closely with Gen Bajwa. These officers are Vice Chief of General Staff-A Gen Nauman Zikriya, DG ISPR Gen Babar Iftikhar, and DG Perspective Planning Cell Gen Ayman Bilal Safdar.

Nearly 20 major generals were superseded in this exercise, but there weren't many big surprises, barring a couple or so, reported Dawn.

All eyes would now be on the posting of the promoted officers, which would be done soon by GHQ. Several important positions are currently lying vacant, reported Dawn.

Shortly after his appointment in 2016, Gen Bajwa got an opportunity to promote seven major generals, which helped him set up his own team.

The seven positions had on that occasion fallen vacant due to the promotion of two officers to four-star ranks, while four others quit after being superseded.