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Pakistan Navy

Pakistan Navy | Pakistan Marine Force

Pakistan Navy was established in 1947 by the Indian Muslim officers serving in the Royal Indian Navy. The title “Royal” was soon added but dismissed in 1956 when Pakistan became the Islamic Republic.

Its operational scope has expanded to greater national due to around 71 commissioned warships and 36,000 active-duty personnel and international responsibility in countering the threat of sea-based global terrorism, drug smuggling, and trafficking problems.

Pakistan Navy’s responsibility is to protect the nation’s seaports, marine borders, approximately 1,000 km (650 mi) of coastline, and support national security and Peacekeeping missions.

Naval Headquarters (NHQ) is the single command structure based at Rawalpindi Cantt near the Joint Staff HQ. The Navy is commanded by the Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), who is by statute a Four-Star Officer, selected by the President, with the necessary consultation and approval of the Prime Minister.

Till October 2014, Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah is the Chief of Naval Staff.

The Navy runs the domestically-built Agosta 90B submarines.

Navy Day is celebrated on 8 September to memorialize its service in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965.

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Commissioned officers

As early as the 1950s, the Pakistan navy, which was established in August 1947, adopted the officer ranks system of the United States Navy, turning from following the ranks and insignia of the Royal Navy.

As opposed to the army or air force where a variety of paths can be taken to become an officer, there is only one path to becoming a naval officer, which is to attend the Pakistan Naval Academy for one-and-a-half years after passing the boot camp in Manora Island.

The Navy operates the domestically-built Agosta 90B submarines
The Navy operates the domestically-built Agosta 90B submarines

The graduated cadets join the Navy as midshipmen, where they get to experience life at sea while being trained in various careers on the ship. Following midshipman graduation, the midshipman is usually trained until six months after graduation before rotating back to the Naval Academy to be promoted to Sub-Lieutenant. During their time in college, they were provided free tuition at the Naval Engineering College in Karachi to earn their bachelor’s degree in their chosen field.

There are three categories of enlisted officers in the Navy: junior officers, senior officers, and star officers. Junior officers are classified as OF-1 to OF-3, while senior officers are classified as OF-4 to OF-5, and star officers are classified as OF-6 to above OF-9.

The Navy Department also employs civilians in fields such as financial management, accounting, medical services, computing, and administration, with more than 2,000 civilians meeting its quota for 2018.

The Maritime Security Agency (MSA) and the Pakistan Army Coast Guard’s naval branch are included in the standing navy strength of the Pakistan Navy according to the admissions and estimates from the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

Check: Pakistan Navy Ranks and Salaries

Enlisted Personnel

Recruiting and enlistment in the navy are done nationwide, and for the Navy, the recruitment takes place via the use of televised commercials and an employment tender that is published twice per year: in May for boot camp and in November for enlistment.

Recruiting offices and centers are located throughout Pakistan, including Punjab, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, and Balochistan – these offices are managed by the Directorate of Recruitment at Navy NHQ Islamabad. Prior to 1966, almost all officers and enlisted men of the Pakistan Navy were required to attend a military academy in the United Kingdom in order to become trained in technical branches.

The enlisted personnel is trained at the PNS Karsaz in Karachi on the aspects of technical subjects after completing the nine-month-long boot camp. They are then assigned to different branches in the Navy upon completing their training.

Navy enlisted personnel who achieve financial success in their profession receive financial aid from the Department of Navy to attend colleges and universities, thus making promotion to officers in the Navy much faster than in the Pak Army or Pak Air Force. When enlisted personnel retires, they rarely stay in their enlisted ranks, as most retire as officers once they reach the age of 62.

These experiences form the basis for their professional training at the universities that will allow them to earn a four-year college degree.

A noncommissioned officer’s (or enlisted personnel’s) shoulder is adorned with their respective anchor colors and patches or badges. The retirement age for enlisted personnel varies and is determined by their rank.

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Recruitment and Training

The British Royal Navy provided cadets with training and education at all levels of their study and training at Britannia Royal Naval College in the United Kingdom after the Navy was established in August 1947.

Department of Navy had 3,800 personnel when it was formed in 1947. As with the Department of Army, the Navy had similar problems as its Department of Army in that the most talented enlisted personnel were Punjabi Muslims while others were naturalized Indian citizens of Pakistan.

During the Bhutto administration, there was a quota system for residents of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan in order to give them a fair opportunity to join the Armed Forces. A Balochi woman joined the navy for the first time in 2012, joining a squad that included 53 female officers and 72 enlistees from Balochistan, Pakistan.

Baloch university students were sent in large numbers to Navy Engineering Colleges and War Colleges for their officer training in 2012, strengthening the Navy’s presence in Balochistan. Three additional training facilities were set up in Balochistan so that the Navy could train its personnel.

The recruiters in the Navy still struggle to enlist citizens and their selfless commitment to serving in the armed forces of urbanized metropolitan cities where college education (notably post-graduate studies in the United States and English-speaking countries) is greatly desired and more prevalent.

A significant challenge is also posed by the Navy’s medical standards and education requirements to perform technical jobs since the Navy requires a significant percentage once matriculation exams are completed.

In the Navy, basic military training takes place on one boot camp, the PNS Himalaya on Manora Island. During the nine-month basic military training at the PNS Himalaya, military life instructions are given along with an emphasis on physical conditioning.

At the end, when the enlisted men and women have completed the boot camp, they are sent to the Pakistan Naval Academy for two years of training before they are able to graduate. In four years, junior officers will earn a bachelor’s degree from the Naval Engineering College in Karachi after graduating from the Naval Academy, and then deploy for six months in the Indian Ocean before being selected to attend the professional schools.

It has been estimated that the Navy has about 30,200 active duty personnel as of 2003 and 2009. It is estimated that the Navy’s active-duty strength was 30,700 in 2014. In 2018, estimates place the Navy’s combined manpower strength at about 40,500.

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Badge logo of Pakistan Marines
Badge logo of Pakistan Marines

Want to see rank structure of Pak Army? Visit Pakistan Army Ranks.

Marines are recommended by the Navy, based on Royal Marines, the Pakistan Marines were formed on 1 July 1971 to start riverine operations in East Pakistan.

The Marines attended their first warfare actions in marine during the Bangladesh Liberation War, fighting against the Indian Army.

The Marines were decommissioned by 1974 Due to poor battle performance in the war, high losses and casualties, and the inability to counter the Indian Army completely.

Though, Marines continued to survive in their initial form until 1988 to meet the fundamental security requirements of Pakistan Navy units. The Marines were recommissioned under Commander M. Obaidullah In 1990.

The Marines are the uniform service branch under the Pak Navy whose direction comes directly from the Pakistan Navy.

It is according to the Navy’s rank code but conducts its joined battle training with Army at Pakistan Military Academy Kakul and School of Infantry in Quetta.

Marine’s single command structure is based at the Manora Fort in Qasim Marine Base in Karachi.

The Marines are within the command of the Commander Coast (COMCOAST), by statute a Two-Star rear-admiral.

According to the ISPR, the Marines are deployed in the southeastern areas of Pakistan to avoid infiltration and secret activities from the Indian Army.

Rear Admiral Bashir Ahmed is the current serving Commandant of Marines.

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