PPP leader and Federal Minister for Water Resources Khurshid Shah Friday said the decision on appointment of the next army chief would be taken by the current government. Speaking to a news channel, he said Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa was set to retire in November and usually the decision on the new COAS was made two months before the retirement date of the outgoing chief. Hence, the decision would be made under the current government, he said. “Whatever decision about new COAS is, it will be made by the present government,” he said. Shah’s statement came a day after the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) urged politicians to refrain from commenting on the military officials, including the appointment of the next army chief. The PPP leader also said Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had not yet started the consultation process on the appointment of a new COAS and that it was likely to begin after June. “It is prerogative of the prime minister whatever decision he makes. The prime minister will consult his allies, but he is the one to make decision.” The minister said that the next general elections should be held by November or December after reversing the electoral laws passed by the PTI government. Khurshid said the discussion on elections should be limited to politicians and the establishment should only be approached to discuss issues related to security for the polling. The PPP leader said that the Election Commission of Pakistan was completely independent and Imran Khan should be praised for appointing an independent chief election commissioner, but the former prime minister was “unfortunately discrediting his own credit.” He took a jibe at Imran Khan for his diatribes against the establishment at his public rallies. “Imran Khan first scares [others] and then gets scared himself.” Shah said he did not have inner knowledge of PML-N meetings in London as it was the party’s internal issue.