Muhammad Zakaullah (Urdu: محمد ذكاءالله; b. 10 January 1958), NI(M), SI(M), TI(M), LOM, is a retired admiral in the Pakistan Navy, who was the 15th Chief of Naval Staff of the Pakistan Navy. He was later replaced by Admiral Zafar Mahmood abbasi.
As naval chief, Admiral Zakaullah is noted for revolutionizing the role of the navy, emphasizing the role of the navy in economic corridor with China and took initiatives to strengthened ties with the Turkish Navy. He also played an active role in establishing the very low frequency facility to provide communications with the submarines as well as ensuring the second-strike capability by commissioning the cruise missile system in the strategic command of the Navy.
Early life and career in Navy
Muhammad Zakaullah was born in Lyalpur (now Faisalabad) in Punjab, Pakistan on 10 January 1958 After graduating from the Cadet College Hasan Abdal, he joined the Pakistan Navy in 1975 where he was sent to join the Pakistan Naval Academy, graduating at top of his class and conferred with coveted Sword of Honour and awarded the chief of the naval staff gold medal at his graduation. Sub-Lieutenant Zakaullah gained commissioned in the Operations Branch, and was sent to United Kingdom for his training and education later his career.
He attended and did his military training from the Royal Naval Staff College, and later attended the London University where he gained MA in Defence studies. He also a attended and graduated from the Quaid-e-Azam University, having attained the MSc in War Studies.
Upon returning to Pakistan, he joined the faculty of and National Defence University to teach war studies.
War and staff appointments
Zakaullah qualified as a surface officer from the United Kingdom, serving first in the Babur which he later commanded as Commander. He also served as a military attaché at the Pakistan Embassy, Doha in Qatar. Captain Zakaullah served as the Directing Staff at the Pakistan Naval War College before taken as secondment by the President Musharraf.
From 1999 till 2003, Commodore Zakaullah tenured as the Director-General of the National Accountability Bureau, before taking over the command of the 25th Destroyer Squadron. His other command appointments included his role as Chief Inspector of Naval Police and military secretary to Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz for a short brief of time. Rear-Admiral Zakaullah also commanded the CTF–150 in Arabian Sea to guard off operations on Somalian piracy.
Vice-Admiral Zakaullah's last war assignment included command of the Pakistan Fleet as its senior commander.
In an emergency address to the media representatives at the ISPR directorate, he quoted to the media that "Pakistan forces are prepared for any critical situation." Answering the question of Indian Army's further capabilities, Admiral Zakaullah said that Pakistan was not concerned due to New Delhi's ground capability as it had the ability to defend itself against any aggression.
He is a keen yachtsman and has represented Pakistan at numerous international events, including 1984 Olympics and Asian Games of 1986 and 1990. He has won Gold medal at the Asian Games twice. He is also a recipient of President's Award for Pride of Performance for outstanding performance in yachting.
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ADM Asif Sandila
| Chief of Naval Staff
2 October 2014 – 6 October 2017
ADM Zafar Mahmood Abbasi