General Raheel meets APS students as school reopens after Peshawar attack

Published: January 12, 2015
COAS meeting schoolchildren at APS. PHOTO: AFP/EXPRESS

COAS meeting schoolchildren at APS. PHOTO: AFP/EXPRESS

PESHAWAR: Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif on Monday morning visited the Army Public School, Peshawar – target of the December 16 attack – as it reopened after an extended winter break, Radio Pakistan reported.

The vacations, in schools across the country, were extended for 12 days in the aftermath of the Taliban attack on Army Public School (APS) that killed 150 people in the Peshawar.

The COAS, along with his wife, met the schoolchildren and their parents at the entrance of the army-run school.

DG ISPR Major General Asim Bajwa tweeted about the army chief’s visit.

Shahrukh Khan, a teenage victim – shot in both legs – of deadly attack told AFP that he had lost 30 of his friends and that he will have mixed feelings sitting in an empty class.

“I have lost 30 of my friends. How will I sit in the empty class, how will I look towards their empty benches?” he told AFP before the school reopened.

“My heart has been broken. All the class fellows I had, have died. Now my heart does not want to attend school,” he added.

While, another survivor, Zahid Ayub, said he was not scared to attend his school.

“I will go and will tell the attackers, we are not afraid of you,” he added.

At least 20 soldiers were seen at the main entry point of the APS in the morning, with an airport-style security gate installed at the front.

Elevated boundary walls with steel wire fencing were also put in place around Peshawar and in schools throughout the rest of the country.

Parents spoke of having to sit down with their children and mentally prepare them for their return to the school, which has undergone a complete renovation to remove all traces of the bloody attack.

“He was terrified but we talked him up. We cannot keep him imprisoned between four walls and we must stand against militancy,” Muhammad Zahoor said as he walked his son along the city’s main Warsak Road.

“I want to go to school to see my friends. I will join the army after my schooling and will take revenge,” said Muhammad Zaid, his son.

Survivors recounted Taliban gunmen moving from room to room hunting for students and teachers. Sometimes the militants toyed with them and pretended they would let them go, before lining them up and shooting them in front of their peers.

Aitchison to reopen on Jan 19 

Punjab Governor Chaudhry Sarwar, during his visit to the college in Lahore, expressed discontent over ineffective security arrangements made in the institution. The governor, as a result, announced a new date for the reopening of the college.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (52)

  • Raghu
    Jan 12, 2015 - 10:28AM

    The PM should have been there in place of COASRecommend

    Jan 12, 2015 - 10:55AM

    Truly a gesture that could come from a family man and a Soldier. Bless you General and your family.


  • AVMPolpot
    Jan 12, 2015 - 10:58AM

    Military Training must be mandatory for all Teachers….
    Or Teaching training for all Military Men.


  • Ahmed
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:07AM

    This is what is called LEADERSHIP!


  • Chachoo
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:08AM

    Could i ask Where is Civilian Leadership. Imran, Nawaz , Mr Khattak where are they?


  • citizen
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:17AM

    Off you go future runners of this nation .May Allah keep you in his safety amen. Stay strong . we have to fight this evil of terrorism together . You education and knowledge will eradicate the evils of darkness . Pakistan Zindabad .


  • Shafaq
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:22AM

    Highly appreciated :) tell us something abt the new principal…


  • Pakistani
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:31AM

    We really need this. Pakistan Zindabad


  • Mercurial_Tim
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:40AM

    Hats off to the Army Chief and his wife for this courageous act. While our Prime Minister and politicians are busy calculating the growth in their sugar mills and industry, our forces are fighting for the nation on all fronts.

    Long story short… with democratic entities like our politicians, who needs an enemy?


  • Pakistani
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:55AM

    Now General Raheel Sharif even has to do what politicians should be doing. These parliamentarians / so-called legislators are only there for the perks and privileges and to have a good time on the expense of tax payers. The heads of the political herds should open a dictionary (although a lot many of them would struggle) and see the meaning of the word ‘leader’ for a reality check.


  • Hassan
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:56AM

    What about the children in Tharparkar who is going to visit them.


  • Jan 12, 2015 - 12:07PM

    A great gesture by Army Chief General Raheel Shareef to visit APS today. COAS with his gestures showing that he is close to the people of Pakistan. He will win million of hearts with his actions.

    Courage of APS students should be appreciated. I wish good luck to all students of APS and hope that they come out of the trauma of loosing their friends soon and get back to normal life.


  • Adnan Siddiqi
    Jan 12, 2015 - 12:16PM


    You are such a funny man! KPK regretfully elected a party into power whose CM was very conspicuously absent today from today’s event at APS. Better yet, the “Boss” of this CM very conveniently tweeted from inside his warm blanket that he along with this new soul mate and the CM in question very much planned to welcome the students at APS but were advised at the last moment not to. Funny enough, the top ANP leadership in Peshawar was very much at hand there as if it was given special approval which wasn’t granted to PTI and the CM of the province.


  • Adnan Siddiqi
    Jan 12, 2015 - 12:19PM


    The politicians you are trying to belittle made their presence felt with aplomb in the form of ANP. More then anything, where is the Chief Minister and the whole of KPK’s cabinet?


  • Dija
    Jan 12, 2015 - 12:32PM

    Also the decision taken by Governor Punjab is also to be appreciated as it depicts his seriousness towards the safety of precious lives – rather than showing a carefree attitude and asking schools to arrange everything on their own little realizing that the institutions theses days have become so commercialize that expecting much out of them sound funny!


  • graphicalmanx
    Jan 12, 2015 - 12:47PM

    @chachoo: IK wanted to go but was told that COAS was visiting today along with his wife.


  • Parvez
    Jan 12, 2015 - 12:56PM

    It was too early in the morning for Nawaz Sharif…….the way Imran Khan behaved after the shooting was simply shameful ……… Raheell Sharif has done the right thing……..but let us hope we don’t have an Iftoquar Chaudry in the making.


  • Basharit
    Jan 12, 2015 - 1:03PM

    I love Pakistan. Pakistan Zindabad.


  • kapt slim
    Jan 12, 2015 - 1:49PM

    COAS setting examples for our politicians
    Thanks God we have a responsible army


  • Adnan Siddiqi
    Jan 12, 2015 - 1:56PM


    Was IK also told that since COAS is there today, he should stay away? How come ANP happened to be there?


  • ali
    Jan 12, 2015 - 1:58PM

    this is a true Pakistan, GOD BLESS PAKISTAN


  • ishrat salim
    Jan 12, 2015 - 2:25PM

    And that what you call ” Leadership “….in stark contrast to our civilian political leadership. These kids should have gone through extensive psychological treatment to overcome such a trauma before they embarked on a new journey….we have no such system in place in our country. We do not learn from other countries who have gone through similar tragedies.


  • Kalash
    Jan 12, 2015 - 3:18PM

    @ Shafaq ; Had this been a show of NS, The credentials of the New Principal would have definitely been made public.
    GUESS WHO ???????
    Maid servant of Marium Nawaz the who was refused travelling in Business Class by the air crew enroute to UK.


    Jan 12, 2015 - 3:23PM

    I grant you full marks about the first sentence of your comment. It was asking too much to make Nawaz get up soooo early in the midday!!!


  • Zalim Morni
    Jan 12, 2015 - 3:34PM

    I saw a lot of weapon carrying soldiers providing security to the school. For how many days will this last and will similar security be provided to all school going kids and not just the army kids.
    This is not the solution, seek and destroy the root cause of terrorism, nothing else will work. Trust me.


  • Humair Memon
    Jan 12, 2015 - 3:56PM

    Well COAS visit to APC Peshawer is quite a gesture and will strengthen courgage among the students of APC Peshawer


  • Jan 12, 2015 - 4:09PM

    He might end up being the most respected and popular COAS in our history. Respect and prayers for Raheel Sharif.


  • Saleem Tahir
    Jan 12, 2015 - 4:20PM

    PM of Pakistan should take some time off from atteedning the board meeting of the sugar miils in which he is investing and offshore visits and visit the school ,even just for media.


  • Sarmad
    Jan 12, 2015 - 4:32PM

    @Chachoo: Imran had planned to visit APS today but was asked to postpone his visit because of COAS visit


  • SK
    Jan 12, 2015 - 4:33PM

    A true nationalist. While other politicians are busy in corruption & getting married off here is a true leader & son of the soil. Hats off to him.


  • Mercurial_Tim
    Jan 12, 2015 - 4:54PM

    @Adnan Siddiqi:

    Great gesture by ANP members as well if they were there. I was referring to the ruling party of the nation, especially the PM and his family enterprise. However, nobody inside or outside of Pakistan holds any of the Pakistani political parties in high regards. They’re all the same – inclusive of ANP – one can’t belittle them further.


  • Ashraf
    Jan 12, 2015 - 5:38PM

    Atleast CM Khattak should be thier and also Imran khan if he is free from Reham khan because they people are responsible for KPK Govt.


  • FaiselH
    Jan 12, 2015 - 5:42PM

    Standing Ovation to the General.
    A true Son of the Soil.
    You have made us all Proud today Sir.


  • nabidad
    Jan 12, 2015 - 6:23PM

    Shame on Prime Minster of Pakistan


  • Citizen26
    Jan 12, 2015 - 7:03PM

    This is how a true leader leads his people in crisis. Right from front and everywhere i see him going. From condolences to the family to making new policy for the country.
    Respect for you General.


  • fatima uz zahra
    Jan 12, 2015 - 7:04PM

    pakistani army zinda bad,our army chief zinda bad.


  • Friendly
    Jan 12, 2015 - 8:26PM

    Thousand salutes to the Army Chief and his wife for this considerate act . This is what true leadership is called , his respect in my heart has increased manifolds. Our worthy politicians have just one statement for all the occasions ” we will fight till last terrorist is dead” but their deeds do not reciprocate with their statements, rather it seems as if they are finding means to protect the terrorists. We do not need any enemy with such meaningless politicians as our leaders who protect the interests of the enemies. Please ask your heart do you respect these politicians? . Respect comes from heart after seeing the noble deeds as our great chief has done not just by making baseless statements.
    Pakistan Zindabaad


  • Farhan
    Jan 12, 2015 - 9:16PM

    Gen Raheel Shairf has again proved that he and Pakistan army are the only ones who are attached to Pakistan. Its a matter of shame for political leadership who talks about democracy and constitution just to keep political interests intact. Had there been no control of Pak army, these politicians must have swallowed whole country.


  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jan 12, 2015 - 10:02PM

    Nobody should mind if a section of our nation praises Generals but praising Generals and disgracing Politicians in one sentence is not only offensive, its dishonest too. It would compel other sections to praise Politicians and disgrace Generals, which (perhaps) our enemies want. Such intellectual dishonesty is our biggest problem. It has resulted in many governments, many armies and many nations in one state which is Pakistan.


  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jan 12, 2015 - 10:09PM

    “Could i ask Where is Civilian Leadership. Imran, Nawaz , Mr Khattak where are they?

    Stop these stupid, divisive and provocative comments.


  • Khubaib
    Jan 12, 2015 - 11:28PM

    Simple great.The general has weathered the storm and rough and tough tumbles of frontier battlefield.The battle hardened
    general is our pride.


  • Muhammad Shafqat
    Jan 13, 2015 - 12:17AM

    Military training should also be for All colleges high school level also to defend Pakistan . Islamic history (neutral) be the Part of education and Pakistani history .make the syllabus according to our need rather than the international pressure .


  • Nawz
    Jan 13, 2015 - 12:32AM

    @ch daad. Pml n puppet to the rescue..


  • AKA
    Jan 13, 2015 - 12:50AM

    are civian leader are biz making money and wedding,you think they care about people.

  • javed
    Jan 13, 2015 - 12:56AM



  • pak47
    Jan 13, 2015 - 2:21AM

    The school is run by Army and governance of Province is run by PTI. Stop bringing PM into everything he has other things to do like meeting with important people like John Kerry and working for economic development.


  • Mirza Zulfiqar Baig
    Jan 13, 2015 - 9:59AM

    Thanks General Sb.


  • Altaf
    Jan 13, 2015 - 9:21PM

    Now General Raheel Sharif even has to do what politicians should be doing. These parliamentarians / so-called legislators are only there for the perks and privileges and to have a good time on the expense of tax payers. The heads of the political herds should open a dictionary (although a lot many of them would struggle) and see the meaning of the word ‘leader’ for a reality check.


  • Patriot
    Jan 14, 2015 - 12:57AM

    What an idead nation….abusing the political leadership and praising an army general…..COAS was performing his duty…thats what he’s been trained for and that’s what he’s being paid for…from our tax money…..No other countries in the world behave or think in such a pathetic manner……we are facing the consequences what the army generals did with this country from the day it came into being till the musharaf era. Even Gen Kiyani was playing double games too while has brother was getting every advantage to become one of the biggest construction contractors in Pakistan. Bringing extremism into this country and changing the educational curriculum to deceive and manipulate the new generation. Everybody talks about business empires of the politicians ….what about the business empires of Pakistan army, Navy and airforce??….No country in the world possess armed forces running their own business empires….and that’s why they are called professional armed forces and given the due respect.
    Current COAS has proven to be a professional soldier….it will take another decade or more like this, if COAS like him appointed in future years. God bless Pakistan


  • Jayesha Ekram
    Jan 15, 2015 - 3:49AM

    Too busy getting married.


  • Mrs. Madeeha Umar
    Jan 15, 2015 - 8:53AM

    Much appreciated.


  • Friendly Kamran
    Jan 15, 2015 - 9:13PM

    I would like to comment on Mr patriot’s comments favouring our worthy politicians unjustly. Its not the matter of appointment, rank or status, Its matter of feeling the pain of those parents who lost their loved ones. Whosoever does any humane deed is liked by people weather a soldier or not . The language which everybody understands and appreciates is humanity and nobody can be custodian of such deeds . It scan be anywhere in or out of uniform. people can feel it everywhere.,
    Pakistan Zindabad


More in Pakistan