Tariq Aziz Musharraf Key Aide Passes Away

ByAsrar Raouf

Former Civil Servent


October 2, 2022

Tariq Aziz Musharraf Key Aide

Asrar Raouf describes a life well-lived

Tariq Aziz Sahib was my first Inspecting Assistant Commissioner and a prominent civil servant belonging to the Incom Tax Service and Tariq Aziz Musharraf Key Aide. He proceeded well in his professional career and was known for his acumen and grip on the rather cumbersome taxation matters. His contribution to the vast field of taxation was widely acknowledged and he was assigned many important assignments during his career. His outstanding quality was his penchant to remain low-key which is generally considered to be a remarkable tendency in the civil service. Gradually climbing the hierarchical ladder of his profession he was promoted to grade 22 and was inducted into the Secretariat group.

Though he preferred to remain a low-key civil servant he was catapulted to prominence due to his friendship with General Musharraf with whom he had studied at FC College Lahore. General Musharraf was keenly aware of the prudent outlook of Tariq Aziz and after taking power in 1999 he asked him to become his principal secretary. Tariq Aziz discharged his responsibilities with due diligence and his performance earned the complete trust of General Musharraf and his government. He also helped Musharraf tremendously at key points and was seen as a vital confidant of the former president.

Tariq Aziz remained close to General Musharraf and continued working for him till the end of his tenure as the general. General Musharraf heavily depended on the advice of Tariq Aziz who was very well-versed in the administrative affairs of the country and it was well-known that he advised the former president correctly. During his association with general Musharraf, Tariq Aziz stayed away from the limelight though he had numerous chances to come to prominence. He was regarded as an extremely self-assured man who was very conversant with the socio-political mainstream of the country. He was aware that the nature of his job was to stay behind and play a role accordingly that he did.

The services of Tariq Aziz were deeply appreciated by the government of General Musharraf and he retained his decisive influence throughout the Musharraf presidency. His advice was given due credence and he was instrumental in many policies that proved beneficial to the public welfare. He was also considered to be an even-handed influence on the policies pursued by the Musharraf regime with the result that it kept its power for so long. His positive contribution was duly acknowledged when he was assigned the important position of head of the National Security Council, an institution considered very important for the strategic affairs of the country.

Tariq Aziz Musharraf Key Aide

Tariq Aziz Musharraf Key Aide and his reputation and persona were held in such high esteem that he was entrusted with spearheading Track-II diplomacy with India and remained instrumental in carrying out behind-the-scene parleys with India. He was reported to have visited India unannounced where he was met with senior Indian officials such as Indian National Security advisor DN Dixit who has also served as Indian ambassador to Pakistan. As was his wont, Tariq Aziz remained tight-lipped about his clandestine visit though it indicated tremendous trust he was held in by the government. It was known then that Pakistan and India have exchanged draft documents and proposals, ahead of any formal meetings, aimed at sorting out mutual issues. Pakistan had given top billing to the peace dialogue with India and has pulled out all the stops to ensure that the peace agenda is followed assiduously.

Throughout the Musharraf era, Tariq Aziz was known for his close links to Musharraf and it was once reported that he was considered to be placed as governor of Punjab replacing Lt-Gen (retd) Khalid Maqbool but this proposal never materialized. During his association with the Musharraf government, Tariq Aziz also had to face controversy as it was alleged that the regime was involved in ballot rigging and nepotism but nothing was ever proved and his reputation remained of a clean public servant. It was also reported that he was the only person in Pervez Musharraf’s close circles who advised Pervez Musharraf not to go for the referendum. It was also reported that Tariq Aziz was one of the key players in the deal between Benazir Bhutto and Pervez Musharraf that paved the way for the restoration of civil democratic governance in Pakistan.

Proving true to his loyalty Tariq Aziz resigned from the post of National Security Committee Secretariat when former President Musharraf resigned from the presidency on 18 August 2008. After his stint with the Musharraf government, Tariq Aziz became Chairman of the Lahore Race Club breathing new life into the racing profession. He passed away at the age of 81 and was laid to rest in the H-8 Islamabad graveyard in the evening. His funeral was attended by a large number of officers of civil administration and people from different walks of life in the twin cities. He left behind a widow, two daughters, and a son. The Weekender 


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