Military Wiki
Abaidullah Khan
Chairman of the National Shipping Corporation

In office
29 December 1996 – 11 March 2000
Preceded by Jawaid Ali
Succeeded by S. Tauquir H. Naqvi
Personal details
Born Abaid Ullah Khan
c. 1940[1]
Kashmir, British India
(Now part of both India and Pakistan)
Citizenship  Pakistan
Residence Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan
Occupation Bureaucrat
Profession Sailor
Military service
Nickname(s) A. U. Khan
Obaidullah Khan
Allegiance  Pakistan
Service/branch Naval Jack of Pakistan.svg Pakistan Navy
Years of service 1958–2000
Rank Insignia Vice Admiral Pakistan Navy.gifUS-O9 insignia.svgVice-Admiral
(PN No. 775)[2]
Unit Executive Branch
Commands Vice Chief of Naval Staff
Commander Pakistan Fleet
DCNS (Operations)
Submarine Command
Battles/wars Indo-Pakistani War of 1965
Indo-Pakistani War of 1971

Vice-Admiral Abaidullah Khan (Urdu: عبيد اللہ خان; best known as A. U. Khan, HI(m), SBt, SJ, was a three-star rank admiral in the Pakistan Navy, and later a bureaucrat who played a crucial role in procuring and technology transfer of the air-independent propulsion-based Agosta 90Bravo class submarine from France in 1994–97.[3][4]


Abaidullah Khan was born in 1940 in India, now part of India and Pakistan, and was commissioned in the Navy in 1958 as Midshipman with S/No. PN. 775 in the Executive Branch.:447[5] He was of the Kashmiri Pathan descent who lost both of his parents at the age of nine during the Indian partition and the first war with India in 1947, and was cared in the foster home.[1]

He later joined the Submarine Command and was trained in PNS Hangor in France in 1966-69.[6] In 1971, Lt-Cdr. A.U. Khan was serving as the second-in-command of PNS Hangor, when it was deployed in Arabian sea, serving on the western front of the third war with India in 1971.:11[7] Together with Lt. Fasih Bokhari, Lt-Cdr. Khan was instrumental in the control room to identify the exact coordinates and positions of Indian warships that ultimately sank INS Khurki under the command of Capt. M.N. Mulla.[1]

After the war, Lt-Cdr. Khan was honored with the gallantry award and was directed to attend the course on War studies at the Islamabad, eventually gaining MSc in war studies in 1980.:447[5]

In 1980s, Cdre. A.U. Khan commanded the Squadron as its officer in tactical command.:453[8] Cdre. Khan was later attached as a Naval attache' to the Royal Navy at the High Commission of Pakistan in London in the United Kingdom.:971[9]

In 1993-94, Rear-Admiral A.U. Khan was promoted as a fleet commander, Commander Pakistan Fleet, where he was instrumental in providing the strong advocacy for acquiring the whole squadron of the Type-21 frigates from the Royal Navy, attending the ceremony with British Vice Admiral Roy Newman, the Flag Officer Plymouth, who handed over the Ambuscade that was designated as Tariq as the lead ship.:contents[10] In 1994, R-Adm. Khan took over the command of the Submarine Command and was posted as the DCNS (Operations) at the Navy NHQ.[11]

In 1994, Adm. Saeed Mohammad Khan selected R-Adm. Khan as the head of the second team that visited France while the first team under R-Adm. Javed Iftikhar visited United Kingdom to acquire the imported submarines.[3] It was reported in media that R-Adm A.U. Khan provided his strong lobbying and advocacy for acquiring the AIP technology from France through the technology transfer rather than acquiring the Upholder from the United Kingdom.[3] R-Adm. Khan who was trained in French submarine had played a pivotal role in convincing the government of acquiring the AIP technology from France on a long term strategic view, and this extremely controversial contact was eventually signed in 1994 with France despite Adm. Saeed Mohammad Khan's urgings.[3]

In 1995, Vice-Admiral Khan was elevated as Vice Chief of Naval Staff, and was taken as secondment by the Benazir administration as a chairman of the National Shipping Corporation (PNSC) in 1996, which he served through service extension until 2000 when he retired from his 42 year long military service.[12]

In 2001–02, V-Adm. A.U. Khan was placed in Exit Control List by the Ministry of Interior due to his leading role in negotiating the deal to procure the technology of the Agosta–90Bravo class submarines, though his name was immediately cleared out by the government, citing mistakes.[13]

In 2018, V-Adm. Khan participated as a chief guest the in celebrating the "to honor the honor the submarine to eulogize the events in 1971", while inspecting the submarine museum, Pakistan Naval Museum in Karachi.[14][15]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Hussain, PAF, Major Malik Ayaz (9 November 1998). "The Angry Sea" (in en). Islamabad: Defence Journal, Maj. Hussain (air force). Retrieved 1 August 2018. 
  2. Shabbir, Usman (5 June 2003). "List of Gallantry Awardees – PN Officers/CPOs/Sailors «  PakDef Military Consortium" (in en). Retrieved 10 August 2018. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 staff writer (5 December 2010). "Agosta submarine deal - Benazir, Zardari not involved: ex-naval spy chief". The Express Tribune. Retrieved 31 July 2018. 
  4. "Ex-Navy chief confirms French kickbacks" (in en). Paktribune. 12 January 2010. Retrieved 31 July 2018. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 (in en) The Gazette of Pakistan. 1980. Retrieved 1 August 2018. 
  6. Amin, A. H. (21 May 2001). "Remembering Our Warriors - Vice Admiral Tasneem" (in en). Islamabad: Defence Journal. Retrieved 1 August 2018. 
  7. Sehgal, Ikram ul-Majeed (2001) (in en). Defence Journal. Ikram ul-Majeed Sehgal. Retrieved 1 August 2018. 
  8. Shah, Mian Zahir (2001) (in en) (snippet view). Bubbles of Water: Or, Anecdotes of the Pakistan Navy (1st ed.). PN Book Club Publication. pp. 487. ISBN 9789698318031. Retrieved 2 August 2018. 
  9. (in en) An Almanack...: By Joseph Whitaker, F.S.A., Containing an Account of the Astronomical and Other Phenomena ...information Respecting the Government, Finances, Population, Commerce, and General Statistics of the Various Nations of the World, with an Index Containing Nearly 20,000 References. Whitaker's Almanack.. 1997. 
  10. Anwar, Cdre. Dr Muhammad (2006) (in en). Stolen Stripes and Broken Medals: Autobiography of a Senior Naval Officer. Author House. ISBN 9781467010566. Retrieved 2 August 2018. 
  11. Siddiqa-Agha, A. (2001) (in en). Pakistan's Arms Procurement and Military Buildup, 1979-99: In Search of a Policy. Springer. pp. 220. ISBN 9780230513525. Retrieved 2 August 2018. 
  12. "About Us > Chairmen History". Pakistan National Shipping Corporation. Retrieved 2 August 2018. 
  13. Sharif, Arshad (30 December 2010). "REPORTER-Kickbacks and commissions in Agosta submarine case-Part-3-Clip-4". Dawn. Retrieved 10 August 2018. 
  14. "Pakistan Navy celebrates HANGOR Day" (in en). The News International. 9 December 2018. Retrieved 12 December 2018. 
  15. "Pakistan Navy celebrates 'Hangor Day'". Daily Times. 9 December 2018. Retrieved 12 December 2018. 

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