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Arrow History of Presidentship in Pakistan

Presidents of Pakistan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

It has been suggested that Line of Succession to President of Pakistan be merged into this article or section. (Discuss)

The President of Pakistan is Head of State of Pakistan. Pakistan has a semi-presidential system of government. According to the Constitution, the President is chosen by an electoral college to serve a five-year term. The electoral college is comprised of the Senate, National Assembly and the provincial assemblies. The President may be elected but may not serve for more than two consecutive terms. The president may also be impeached and subsequently removed from office by a two-thirds vote by the Parliament. The President must also be a Muslim.

At various times in history, changes in the Constitution of Pakistan have altered the powers and privileges associated with the office of the President. The Constitution gives the President reserve powers - subject to Supreme Court approval or veto - to dissolve the National Assembly of Pakistan, triggering new elections, and thereby to dismiss the Prime Minister. The President also chairs the National Security Council and appoints the heads of the Army, Navy and Air Force.
History of the Presidency

In 1947, Pakistan became a dominion within the British Commonwealth with the British Monarch as head of state, represented by the Governor-General of Pakistan. In 1956 Pakistan established its first constitution and became a Republic, and the positions of Queen and Governor-General were replaced by the President.

Pakistan's first president was Iskander Mirza, who was also the last Governor General. In 1958, he abrogated the constitution and declared martial law. A few weeks later, he was overthrown in a bloodless coup d'état by General Ayub Khan, who had declared himself president. The constitution was revised, and the president became the ruler of Pakistan. The constitution also stipulated that the president be elected by the people. Elections were held in 1963, and Khan defeated Fatima Jinnah, sister of founder of Pakistan, Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

Ayub Khan continued as president until March 25, 1969, when he passed the presidency to Yahya Khan. Yahya Khan stepped down after the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 and Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto became the new president and presided over the formation of a new constitution. This constitution was completed in 1973, and reduced the presidency to a figurehead position, giving power to the Prime Minister. Bhutto stepped down as President and became Prime Minister, symbolizing the transition. The President was henceforth elected by legislative assembly members, not by popular vote. Popular vote would be used to directly elect the members of the National Assembly, including the Prime Minister.

In 1978, Prime Minister Bhutto was toppled by General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq, who declared himself President. The presidency again became the premier position in the Pakistani government. Zia introduced the Eighth Amendment, which gave reserve powers to the President's office. Zia died in 1988 and the Prime Minister's office regained leadership of the country. The Presidency retained its reserve powers until 1997, when the Thirteenth Amendment was passed.

However, the 1999 coup of General Pervez Musharraf brought executive powers back to the President's office. National and provincial elections were held in 2002. In December 2003, the Seventeenth Amendment partially restored the President's reserve powers, but made the exercise of those powers subject to Supreme Court approval or veto within 30 days. In January 2004, the Electoral College gave Musharraf a vote of confidence, as result of which he was (according to the Constitution) "deemed to be elected". Musharraf's term of office as President is set to end in 2007.

Presidents of the Republic

The head of state of Pakistan before 1956 was the British Monarch. For the Governors-General who represented them from 1947 to 1956, see Governor-General of Pakistan.
Iskander Mirza

(November 13, 1899November 13, 1969) was the first President of Pakistan and held that position from 1956 until 1958. He was also the fourth Governor-General of Pakistan before it was replaced by the Presidency.

Iskander Mirza was born in Murshidabad, Bengal in 1899 and grew up in Bombay. After completing his early education, he was educated at the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst, becoming the first graduate from the Indian subcontinent at the academy, and commissioned into the British Indian Army in 1920. Mirza only served in the army for six years, after which he was the first Indian to be accepted in the elite Indian Political Service, eventually becoming a joint secretary in the Ministry of Defense of British India. In this position he was responsible for dividing the British Indian Army into the future armies of Pakistan and India.

Upon the formation of Pakistan, Mirza was made the Defense Secretary of the new nation, this appointment owed to Mirza's ranking as the highest Muslim civil servant in India at the time. In 1954 he was made governor of East Pakistan to bring order to a politically distressed region. This position was followed by his being appointed Minister of Interior and Frontier Regions in Prime Minister Bogra's cabinet. In 1955 he became acting Governor-General, before becoming the last Governor-General of Pakistan. Iskander Mirza was also a great advocate of the One Unit scheme and believed in the separation of state and religion.

In 1956, Pakistan established its first constitution, and the position of Governor-General was replaced by that of President. The two were essentially the same, but Mirza was officially elected as President by the Assembly. During his presidency, Pakistan was politically unstable, this was marked by four different prime ministers in two years.

By 1958, realising that the 1956 Constitution was contributing to political instability, Mirza declared martial law on October 7th with the view to introducing a new constitution "more suited to the genious of the Pakistani people" in November. He appointed the commander-in-chief of the Pakistan Army, Ayub Khan as the martial law administrator. This move quickly backfired as Ayub Khan forced Mirza to step down within three weeks after the establishment of martial law and exiled him to England. Ayub Khan declared himself President on October 27th after a bloodless coup d'état.

Mirza lived in exile in London till his death in 1969. After Yahya Khan's military government refused to allow him to be buried in his own country, his body was flown to Tehran where the Shah of Iran gave him a State Funeral befitting a Head of State.

Ayub Khan

Muhammad Ayub Khan (May 14, 1907 – April 19, 1974) was a Field Marshal during the mid-1960s, and the political leader of Pakistan from 1958 to 1969. He became Pakistan's first native Commander in Chief in 1951, and was the youngest full-rank general and self-appointed field marshal in Pakistan's military history. He was also the first Pakistani military general to seize power through a coup.
Early years

Khan was born in the village of Rehana near Haripur Hazara to a Hindko speaking Pashtun family of the Tareen tribe, the first child of the second wife of Mir Dad Khan, who was a Risaldar Major in Hodson's Horse. For his basic education, he was enrolled in a school in Sarai Saleh, which was about 4 miles from his village. He used to go to school on a mule's back. Later he was shifted to a school in Haripur, where he started living with his grandmother. He enrolled at Aligarh University in 1922, but never completed his studies, as he was accepted into the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He did well at Sandhurst, and was given an officer's post in the British Indian Army and then joined the 1st Battalion of the 14 Punjab regiment (Sherdils), later known as 5 Punjab Regiment. During World War II he served as a captain and later as a major on the Burma front. Following the war, he joined the fledgling Pakistani Army as the 10th ranking senior officer (his Pakistan Army number was 10). He was promoted to Brigadier and commanded a brigade in Waziristan and then was sent initially with the local rank of Major General to East Pakistan as General Officer Commanding a division that was responsible for the whole East Wing of Pakistan in 1948 from where he returned in November 1949 as Adjutant General and then briefly was named Deputy Commander-in-Chief.

Ayub Khan was made Commander-in-Chief of the Pakistan Army on January 17, 1951, succeeding General Sir Douglas Gracey, thus becoming the first native Pakistani general to hold that position. He would later go on to serve in the second cabinet (1954) of Muhammad Ali Bogra as Defence Minister, and when Iskander Mirza declared martial law on October 7, 1958, Khan was made its chief martial law administrator. This would be the first of many instances in the history of Pakistan of the military becoming directly involved in politics.
President of Pakistan (1958–1969)

As a result of his differences with Mirza, Khan gained more and more power, and became President of Pakistan after deposing Mirza on October 27 in a bloodless coup. This was actually welcomed in Pakistan, since the nation had experienced a very unstable political climate since independence. Khan soon adopted the titles of Hilal-e-Pakistan, and the rank of Field Marshal. He was to be Pakistan's second field marshal, if the first is regarded as Field Marshal Sir Claude Auchinleck (1884-1981), supreme commander of military forces in India and Pakistan in the lead-up to independence in 1947 and a vocal opponent of Partition.

Khan moved to have a constitution created, and this was done in 1961. The Constitution called for elections, which took place in 1962, when martial law was lifted. Khan's main opponent was Fatima Jinnah, the sister of Pakistan's founding father. Despite Jinnah's immense popularity, Khan won the majority of the vote; whether or not this was done without corruption is debatable.

As President, Ayub Khan allied Pakistan with the global U.S. military alliance against the Soviet Union. This in turn led to major economic aid from the U.S. and European nations, and the industrial sector of Pakistan grew very rapidly, and this in turn improved the economy, as did Khan's educational and land reforms. It was under Ayub Khan that the capital was moved from Karachi to Rawalpindi, in anticipation of the construction of a new capital: Islamabad. In 1960, Khan's government signed the Indus Waters Treaty with archrival India to resolve disputes regarding the sharing of the waters of the six rivers in the Punjab doab that flow between the two countries. Khan's administration also built a major network of irrigation canals, high-water dams and thermal and hydroelectric power stations.

Despite the treaty, Khan maintained icy relations with India. Khan established close political and military ties with Communist China, exploiting its differences with Soviet Russia and its 1962 war with India. To this day, China remains a strong economic, political and military ally of Pakistan.

The turning point in Khan's rule was the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, which despite a military stalemate, resulted in higher personnel losses for Pakistan than India. The war ended in the settlement that was reached by Khan at Tashkent Declaration. The settlement led Bhutto to resign his post and take up opposition to Khan. The war also adversely affected Pakistan's economy. Government corruption and nepotism, in addition to an environment of repression of free speech and political freedoms increased unrest. With publications like Zeb-un-Nissa Hamidullah's Mirror criticising his regime vociferously, Khan began to increase censorship and his control over the nation even more. These actions only served to further agitate the Pakistani population, which fell into a disarray of protests, strikes and riots, and soon required the presence of the army in the cities. Bhutto used this to his political advantage, while the Awami League also made great political gains in East Pakistan. Attacked both in the press and in cities and villages across both wings of the nation, Khan began to lose both power and popularity.

During Ayub Khan's rule the price of 1 kg sugar was increased by 1 rupee and the whole population took to streets[citation needed] As Ayub's popularity plummeted, he decided to give up rule. Ironically, this was just what Zeb-un-Nissa Hamidullah, one of the journalists who criticised his rule greatly, said he should do. In 1969 he turned over control of Pakistan to General Yahya Khan, whom he had previously appointed chief martial law administrator.

Yahya Khan

Agha Muhammad Yahya Khan (February 4, 1917August 10, 1980) was the President of Pakistan and Chief of Army Staff from 1969 to 1971, following the resignation of Ayub Khan. His rule was characterized by tensions in East Pakistan in the early 1970s that finally led to its secession following the Bangladesh Liberation War. The twin failures, the dismemberment of the nation and the military defeat at the hands of arch rival India (see Indo-Pakistani War of 1971), forced him to resign and hand over power to Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto.

Yahya Khan was born in Chakwal in 1917 to a family of Qizilbash Persian speaking soldiers. He attended Punjab University and finished first in his class. He then joined the British Army, and served in World War II as an officer in the Indian 4th Infantry Division. He served in Iraq, Italy, and North Africa. During mid 1960's , Yahya Khan served as head of Capital Development Authority which was set up to organize and maintain the new Pakistani capital Islamabad. In March 1969 Ayub Khan resigned under intense public pressure. Instead of transferring power to the speaker of the National Assembly, as the constitution dictated, however, he handed it over to the commander in chief of the army, General Agha Muhammad Yahya Khan. Yahya assumed the presidential office and declared martial law. In an attempt to make his martial-law regime more acceptable, Yahya dismissed almost 300 senior civil servants and identified 30 families that were said to control about half of Pakistan's gross national product. To curb their power Yahya issued an ordinance against monopolies and restrictive trade practices in 1970. He also made commitments to transfer power to civilian authorities, but in the process of making this shift, his intended reforms broke down.

The greatest challenge to Pakistan's unity, however, was presented by East Pakistan, led by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, leader of the Awami League, who insisted on a federation under which East Pakistan would be virtually independent. He saw a federal government that would deal with defense and foreign affairs only; the currencies would be different, although freely convertible. His program had great appeal for East Pakistanis, and in the election of December 1970 called by Yahya, Mujib, as he was called, won by a landslide in East Pakistan, capturing a majority in the National Assembly. Bhutto's Pakistan People's party (PPP) emerged as the largest in West Pakistan.

Political power in Pakistan was traditionally monopolised by West Pakistanis. Not wishing to give up that power, or suspecting Mujib of secessionist politics, Yahya in March 1971 postponed indefinitely the convening of the National Assembly. Mujib in return accused Yahya of collusion with Bhutto and established a virtually independent government in East Pakistan. Yahya opened negotiations with Mujib in Dacca in mid-March, but the effort soon failed. Mujib was arrested and brought to West Pakistan to be tried for treason. General Rahimuddin Khan was appointed by Yahya to oversee the proceedings, and would later sentence Mujib to an unconfirmed guilty verdict (which Bhutto would go on to veto). Meanwhile Pakistan's army went into action against Mujib's civilian followers, who demanded freedom and independence for Bangladesh (“Bengali Nation”). The military action unleashed by the Pakistan army is widely considered to be genocide.

There were a great many casualties during the ensuing military operations in East Pakistan, as the Pakistani army attacked the poorly armed population. India claimed that nearly 10 million Bengali refugees crossed its borders, and stories of West Pakistani atrocities abounded. The Awami League leaders took refuge in Calcutta and established a government in exile. India finally intervened on December 3, 1971, and the Pakistani army surrendered 13 days later. Later, as anger over its defeat by India boiled into street demonstrations throughout Pakistan, rumors of an impending coup d'état by younger army officers against the government of President Mohammed Agha Yahya Khan swept the country. Yahya became the highest-ranking casualty of the war: to forestall further unrest, he hastily surrendered his powers to Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, age 43, the ambitious leader of West Pakistan's powerful People's Party and in January 1972 an independent Bangladesh came into existence. When the Commonwealth of Nations admitted Bangladesh later that year, Pakistan withdrew from membership, not to return until 1989. However, the Bhutto government gave diplomatic recognition to Bangladesh in 1974.
Yahya Khan died in August 1980, in Rawalpindi.

Zulfikar Ali Bhutto

Zulfiqar/Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (or Shaheed Quaid-e-Awam) b (January 5, 1928 – d. April 4, 1979) was a Pakistani politician and a statesman of international repute. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was the son of Sir Shah Nawaz Bhutto an influential Sindhi landlord and the Dewan (minister) of Junagadh state. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto served as President from 1971 to 1973 and as Prime Minister, from 1973 to 1977. He has the rare distinction of being a civilian Chief Martial Law Administrator for few weeks. Deposed in a coup by General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq, he was hanged in 1979 by the Supreme Court under martial law on charges of authorizing the murder of a political opponent.

Early years

Bhutto was born in Larkana (in what is now Pakistani Sindh) as the son of Sir Shah Nawaz Bhutto. He completed his early education in Bombay at the Cathedral and John Connon School . After completing his initial education, he went to the United States in 1947 to study at the University of Southern California, and later transferred to the University of California, Berkeley. He applied to Harvard and was accepted, but chose to stay at Berkeley. He was the first Asian student to be elected to the Berkeley Student Council. From Berkeley he earned a BA in political science in 1950, after which he went to Oxford and studied at Christ Church College from where he graduated with honors.
Following his time at Oxford, he was called to the bar at Lincoln's Inn in 1953 (which had also been attended by Allama Iqbal. The same year his wife Begum Nusrat Bhutto had a daughter Benazir, who would later become prime minister herself.
Political career

During his student days, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had acquired an anti-Imperialist view of the world. He was a firm believer in economic self reliance and political independence themes he expounded in his book, Myth of Independence.

As a member of Pakistan's delegation to the United Nations in 1957, at the age of 29 years, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto addressed the Sixth Conference of the United Nations on "The Definition of Aggression". As a participant at the International Conference in Geneva, Switzerland in March, 1958 Zulfikar Ali Bhutto spoke for mankind with the bold declaration: "The High Seas are free to all." He was the youngest Federal Cabinet member in the history of Pakistan, at the age of 30. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto held the key portfolios of Minister of Commerce, Minister of Information, Minister of National Reconstruction, Minister of Fuel, Power and Natural Resources before becoming the Foreign Minister. As Minister of Fuel, Power and Natural Resources, he signed a path breaking agreement for exploration of oil and gas with Russia in 1960. He set up a Gas and Mineral Development Corporation in 1961 and Pakistan's first refinery in 1962 at Karachi.

Bhutto emerged on the world stage as Leader of the Pakistan Delegation to the UN in 1959. To muster the support for Kashmir issue he toured China, Britain, Egypt and Ireland. He also held a series of talks with the Indian Foreign Minister Swaran Singh. He was appointed Foreign Minister in 1963 and remained at that post until his resignation in June 1966. Bhutto made indelible imprints on world community by his inimitable oratorical skills in United Nation's General Assembly and the Security Council[citation needed]. He believed in an independent Foreign Policy which had hitherto been the hand maiden of the Western Powers. During his tenure as Foreign Minister, Pakistan and Iran cemented a special relationship.

In 1958 he joined the cabinet of President Iskander Mirza. From this point, he was active in the Pakistani government, working at various posts. In 1966 he resigned from the cabinet, after serving as Foreign Minister.
His opposition to the Tashkent accord between India and Pakistan led to his resignation from the government. In 1967 Bhutto formed the Pakistan People's Party (PPP) to oppose President Ayub Khan's regime. He adopted a uniform similar to those worn by the Communist Party of China leaders and called for the introduction of "Islamic socialism" in Pakistan and the commencement of a "thousand years war" against India. The slogan of "Food, Shelter and Clothing" shifted the focus of Pakistan politics from theological to economic issues. Using the popular title Quaid-e-Awam ("Leader of the People,") Bhutto launched a nationwide tour, agitating against the military dictatorship.

Bhutto was arrested in connection with these activities in November 1968, and detained for 3 months. The movement he helped unleash in West Pakistan (coextensive with the country's current boundaries), in conjunction with agitation for greater autonomy taking place in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh), forced the resignation of Ayub Khan in March 1969. Ayub Khan handed power over to the army commander in chief, Agha Muhammad Yahya Khan, who assumed the presidency and reimposed martial law.

The issue of an autonomous East Pakistan continued to plague Yahya's Administration. In the elections held in 1970, the pro-autonomy Awami League won by a landslide in East
Pakistan, capturing enough parliamentary seats to control any government that might be formed. On the other side, Bhutto's PPP captured the majority of seats in West Pakistan. When Yahya delayed the transfer of power to the newly elected representatives in March 1971, public unrest erupted in East Pakistan. East Pakistani leaders demanded the establishment of an independent nation of Bangladesh, and the Pakistani Army cracked down on armed revolutionaries and massacred civilians in East Pakistan.

President of Pakistan (1971 – 1973)

When India intervened in December, the Pakistani Army was swiftly defeated, and East Pakistan emerged as the state of Bangladesh (Bangladesh Liberation War and Indo-Pakistani War of 1971). Yahya Khan resigned, and Bhutto was inaugurated as President and Chief Martial Law Administrator on December 20, 1971. For a brief period, Bhutto appointed General Gul Hassan as the Commander-in-chief of the then demoralized Pakistani Army.

However, Bhutto dismissed Gul Hassan in March 1972 and appointed General Tikka Khan as Chief of the Army Staff, who proved to be extremely loyal to Bhutto since he genuinely believed that the army should only perform its professional duties and not interfere in politics. Tikka Khan ensured that the army did not intrude in politics, which was greatly advantageous to Bhutto as it allowed him to enact his policies with the knowledge that the chances of a military coup had been eliminated.

Bhutto introduced socialist economic reforms while working to prevent any further division of the country. He nationalized Pakistan's major industries, life insurance companies, and private schools and colleges. Although still a major landholder, dubbed by his opponents the "Raja of Lārkāna," Bhutto enacted tax relief for the country’s poorest agricultural workers and placed ceilings on land ownership. During his tenure there was a massive transfer of resources towards the dominant rural economy by setting higher prices for agricultural products.

The Karachi Nuclear Power Plant was inaugurated by Bhutto during his role as President of Pakistan at the end of 1972. Long before, as Minister for Fuel, Power and National Resources, he has played a key role in setting up of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission. The Kahuta facility was also established by the Bhutto Administration.
Prime Minister of Pakistan (1973 – 1977)

He helped unite the country despite worries of it's imminent collapse post 1971, lifted martial law in 1972, and pushed through a new constitution in 1973 that recognized Islam as the national religion. The never ending dispute of powers between the Head of State and Parliament was resolved temporarily by empowering the office of the Prime Minister.
On the international front, Bhutto resumed implementation of his policy of nonaligned neutrality. He withdrew Pakistan from the British Commonwealth of Nations and from the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO), sponsored by the United States. In July 1972 he negotiated the Simla Agreement, which confirmed a line of control dividing Kashmīr and prompted the withdrawal of Indian troops from Pakistani territory. To forge closer ties with the Islamic world, in 1974 Bhutto hosted the second meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Conference in the city of Lahore. He used this forum to announce Pakistan’s official recognition of Bangladesh. To bolster Pakistan’s military defense capabilities, Bhutto laid the groundwork for a nuclear weapons program.
During elections held in March 1977, nine opposition parties, united as the Pakistan National Alliance, ran an apparently popular campaign against Bhutto’s PPP. When the PPP won a decisive victory in the parliamentary round of the elections, the PNA accused Bhutto’s party of rigging the vote and withdrew in protest from upcoming provincial elections. Widespread street fighting broke out, and opposition politicians were arrested.
As the situation deterioated Bhutto and PNA leaders started negotiations for a peaceful conclusion of the confrontation. After protracted negotiations agreement was finally agreed upon at the end of june 1977. The day after the agreement martial law was imposed by the Army.

Downfall and trial

On July 5, 1977 the military, led by General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq, staged a coup. Zia relieved Bhutto of power, holding him in detention for a month. Zia pledged that new elections would be held in 90 days. He kept postponing the elections and publicly retorted during successive press conferences that if the elections were held in the presence of Bhutto his party would not return to power again.
Upon his release, Bhutto traveled the country amid adulatory crowds of PPP supporters. He used to take the train traveling from the south to the north and on the way, would address public meetings at different stations. Several of these trains were late, some by days, in reaching their respective destinations and as a result Bhutto was banned from traveling by train. The last visit he made to the city of Multan in the province of Punjab was marked the turning point in Bhutto's political career and ultimately, his life. In spite of the administration's efforts to block the gathering, the crowd was so large that it became disorderly, providing an opportunity for the administration to declare that Bhutto had been taken into custody because the people were against him and it had become necessary to protect him from the masses for his own safety.
On September 3 the army arrested Bhutto again on charges of authorizing the murder of a political opponent in March of 1974. A 35-year-old politician Ahmed Raza Kasuri tried to run as a PPP candidate in elections, despite having previously left the party. The PPP rebuffed him. Three years earlier, Kasuri and his family had been ambushed, leaving Kasuri's father, Nawab Mohammad Ahmad Khan, dead. Kasuri claimed that he was the actual target, accusing Bhutto of being the mastermind. Kasuri later claimed that he had been the victim of 15 assassination attempts.
Bhutto was released 10 days after his arrest after a judge, Justice KMA Samadani found the evidence "contradictory and incomplete." Justice Samadani had to pay for this; he was immediately removed from the court and placed at the disposal of law ministry. Three days later Zia arrested Bhutto again on the same charges, this time under "martial law." When the PPP organized demonstrations among Bhutto's supporters, Zia canceled the upcoming elections.
Bhutto was arraigned before the High Court of Lahore instead of in a lower court, thus automatically depriving him of one level of appeal. The judge who had granted him bail was removed. Five new judges were appointed, headed by Chief Justice of Lahore High Court Maulvi Mustaq, who denied bail. The trial would last five months, and Bhutto appeared in court on a dock specially built for the trial.
Proceedings began on October 24, 1977. Masood Mahmood, the director general of the Federal Security Force (since renamed the Federal Investigation Agency), testified against Bhutto. Mahmood had been arrested immediately after Zia's coup and had been imprisoned for two months prior to taking the stand. In his testimony, he claimed Bhutto had ordered Kasuri's assassination and that four members of the Federal Security Force had organized the ambush on Bhutto's orders.
The 4 alleged assassins were arrested and later confessed. They were brought into court as "co-accused" but one of them recanted his testimony, declaring that it had been extracted from him under torture. The following day, the witness was not present in court; the prosecution claimed that he had suddenly "fallen ill."
Bhutto's defense challenged the prosecution with proof from an army logbook the prosecution had submitted. It showed that the jeep allegedly driven during the attack on Kasuri was not even in Lahore at the time. The prosecution had the logbook disregarded as "incorrect." During the defense's cross-examination of witnesses, the bench often interrupted questioning. The 706-page official transcript contained none of the objections or inconsistencies in the evidence pointed out by the defense. Former U.S. attorney general Ramsey Clark, who attended the trial, wrote;
"The prosecution's case was based entirely on several witnesses who were detained until they confessed, who changed and expanded their confessions and testimony with each reiteration, who contradicted themselves and each other, who, except for Masood Mahmood ... were relating what others said, whose testimony led to four different theories of what happened, absolutely uncorroborated by an eyewitness, direct evidence, or physical evidence."
When Bhutto began his testimony on January 25, 1978, Chief Justice Maulvi Mustaq closed the courtroom to all observers. Bhutto responded by refusing to say any more. Bhutto demanded a retrial, accusing the Chief Justice of bias, after Mustaq allegedly insulted Bhutto's home province. The court refused his demand.
On March 18, 1978, Bhutto was found guilty of murder and sentenced to death. Bhutto did not seek an appeal. While he was transferred to a cell in Rawalpindi central jail, his family appealed on his behalf, and a hearing before the Supreme Court commenced in May. Bhutto was given one week to prepare. Bhutto issued a thorough rejoinder to the charges, although Zia blocked its publication. Chief Justice S. Anwarul Haq adjourned the court until the end of July 1978, supposedly because 5 of the 9 appeals court judges were willing to overrule the Lahore verdict. One of the pro-Bhutto judges was due to retire in July.
Chief Justice S. Anwarul Haq presided over the trial, despite being close to Zia, even serving as Acting President when Zia was out of the country. Bhutto's lawyers managed to secure Bhutto the right to conduct his own defense before the Supreme Court. On December 18, 1978, Bhutto made his appearance in public before a packed courtroom in Rawalpindi. By this time he had been on death row for 9 months and had gone without fresh water for the previous 25 days. He addressed the court for four days, speaking without notes.
The appeal was completed on December 23, 1978. On February 6, 1979, the Supreme Court issued its verdict, "Guilty", a decision reached by a bare 4-to-3 majority. The Bhutto family had 7 days in which to appeal. The court granted a stay of execution while it studied the petition. By February 24, 1979 when the next court hearing began, appeals for clemency arrived from many heads of state. Zia said that the appeals amounted to "trade union activity" among politicians.
On March 24, 1979 the Supreme Court dismissed the appeal. Zia upheld the death sentence. On April 4, 1979, Bhutto was hanged.
Political legacy

Zulfikar Ali Bhutto
The Constitution of 1973, passed unanimously, is a direct legacy of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. The Role of Islam in the State, the degree of Provincial Autonomy, and the Nature of Executive were points of dispute since the birth of the State. Bhutto managed to bring all the political parties: Jamat-e-Islami, JUI and JUP, who demanded an Islamic State; and Wali Khan, the leader of the opposition in Parliament, led National Awami Party, which was the major party in the Frontier and Balochistan, calling for autonomy, to agree to a consensus on the new Constitution and permanently resolving all the three issues.
The Senate of Pakistan was created, in which the provinces had equal representation in order to redress the balance of power in Pakistan. The creation of Council of Common Interest also gave to the provinces a greater weight in the federal dispensation. Islam was declared to be the State religion, and the Council of Islamic Ideology was given charge of the Islamisation of laws. At the same time the Constitution reiterated the basic principle of socialism: "from each according to his ability to each according to his need".
Through the 13th Amendment of 1997, the role of the Prime Minister was restored as was intended to be according to the Constitution of 1973. This role of the Prime Minister temporary lasted until General Pervez Musharraf took over as the Chief Executive in 1999 through a military coup d'état. The constitution was further mutilated through yet another LFO; Legal Framework Order, this time of another General. The 17th amendment of December 29, 2003 rendered the role of the Prime Minister a puppet at the hands of the ruling General and the Parliament to that of ineffective rubber stamp.

Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry

Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry (January 1, 1904 - June 2, 1982) was President of Pakistan from August 14, 1973 until his resignation on September 16, 1978.
Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry was born in the city of Gujrat (the village Marala) in the Punjab province on January 1, 1904. He received his early education from his hometown and went to Aligarh University and later Punjab University from where he got a law degree, and went into practicing law. He did his M. A. in Political Science in 1925 and took his degree of Law from the University of Punjab in 1927. After completing his education, he went back to Gujrat and started practicing Law. He took part in the election of Gujrat District Board and was elected unopposed.
He joined the Muslim League in 1942. In 1945, he was elected from Gujrat as the President of Muslim League. He took part in the 1946 elections on Muslim League's ticket and played an important role in propagating the ideas of Muslim League among the people of his area. Upon the independence of Pakistan, Chaudhry got involved in the new government, moving up to high ranking positions in the National Assembly.
After Independence, he was given the post of Parliamentary Secretary. He was later appointed Minister for Education and Health. In 1951, he contested the elections of the Punjab Legislative Assembly on the Muslim League ticket and was elected as a member of the Punjab Assembly. In 1952, he represented Pakistan in the United Nations. In the 1956 elections, he was elected as member of the Assembly and later as the Speaker of the National Assembly. He remained as Speaker till 1958. In 1962, when Ayub Khan announced the elections, he was selected as the Deputy Opposition Leader of the House on the basis of his experience and knowledge about parliamentary proceedings. He joined the Convention Muslim League, and after the 1956 elections, he was elected as the Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly.
He was elected as member of the National Assembly in 1970 on the ticket of Pakistan Peoples Party and was later elected as the Speaker of the National Assembly. He would end up joining the Pakistan Peoples Party and would be made President in 1973, when the head of the PPP, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was made Prime Minister.
Chaudhry was largely a figurehead (because he was threatened by the unrest created by the political parties and had no choice but to comply with the politicians actions; a feud between the Prime Minister and President would have further weakened the country), and was the first President with less power than the Prime Minister. This was due to the new constitution of 1973 that gave power to the Prime Minister. Previously, the President had been the chief leader of Pakistan, having the power to appoint Prime Ministers.
Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry would remain President until 1978, when he would resign after the military took control of the government under General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq. General Zia respected him dearly and came to visit him on his death-bed. Chaudhry died on June 2, 1982. His family since then has taken a very active role in politics to make Pakistan into the country it was meant to be. His brother Haji Rehamdad Ilahi was a Senator; his son was an MNA; his nephew was an MNA; numerous members of his family are in politics, the army and police; and his grandson is currently the MNA of his constituency.

Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq

General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq (August 12, 1924August 17, 1988) ruled Pakistan from 1977 to 1988. His rule over the country, which lasted eleven years, is the longest to date in the history of Pakistan. Appointed Chief of Army Staff in 1976, General Zia-ul-Haq came to power after he overthrew ruling Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, after widespread civil disorder, in a bloodless military coup d'état on July 5, 1977 and imposed Martial Law. He assumed the post of President of Pakistan in 1978 which he held till his death on August 17, 1988.
His reign witnessed the enforcement of strict Islamic law within the country, the political stabilization of secession-threatening Balochistan following his setting-up of a separate military regime within the province, the passing of the controversial 8th Amendment into constitutional law, as well as the gradual privatization and subsequent rejuvenation of a previously declining economy.
He also fought a war by proxy in Afghanistan, aiding the Mujahideen against the superpower Soviet Union, in the Soviet-Afghan War. Following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 and the end of Détente, he was instrumental in providing United States-backed military aid to the Afghan resistance against Soviet occupation and then later diverting them to the Kashmir cause in the late 1980s. His major contributions to the Mujahideen greatly aided in complete Soviet withdrawal by 1988.
Having become President in 1978, he secured his position as head of state through a referendum in 1984 which successfully ensured his rule as President for another five years. He lifted Martial Law and held partyless elections in 1985, and handpicked Muhammad Khan Junejo to be the Prime Minister of Pakistan. He dismissed Junejo's government in May 1988 on several charges. He was assassinated in a planned aircraft crash on August 17, 1988 under mysterious circumstances, and the perpetrators of the highly sophisticated air sabotage have not been proven. His death ended his unprecedentedly long eleven-year military dictatorship over Pakistan.

Early life

Zia was born in Jalandhar (in India) in 1924 as the second child of a school teacher named Mohammad Akbar. He completed his initial education in Simla and then at St. Stephen's College, Delhi. He was commissioned in the British Army in 1943 and served during World War II. At Pakistan's independence, Zia joined the Pakistani Army as a major. He got trained in the United States 19621964 at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Zia was stationed in Jordan from 1967 to 1970, helping in the training of Jordanian soldiers, as well as leading the training mission into battle during the Black September in Jordan operations. On 1 April 1976, Prime Minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto appointed Zia-ul-Haq as Chief of Army Staff, ahead of a number of more senior officers.

Rise to Power

Military Coup

As Bhutto's autocratic government became increasingly violent with its detractors and opponents, it's popularity greatly fell. Eventually, Bhutto's ruling Pakistan People's Party faced a bloody deadlock with the opposing Pakistan National Alliance. On July 5, 1977, Chief of Army Staff General Zia-ul-Haq led a bloodless coup against Bhutto's government. The military coup, named Operation Fairplay, was successful, and Zia enforced Martial Law, effectively putting an end to the deteriorating law-and-order situation. Shortly after, Zia promised to hold elections in October, and restore power to civilian representatives. Thus, General Zia-ul-Haq became the third person in the history of Pakistan to impose Martial Law.

Postponement of Elections and Call for Accountability

After assuming power as Chief Martial Law Administrator, General Zia promised to hold National and Provincial Assembly elections in the next 90 days and to hand over power to the representatives of the nation. He also stated that the constitution had not been abrogated whatsoever, but had been temporarily suspended. However, in October 1977, he announced the postponement of the electoral plan and decided to start an accountability process of the politicians. Zia said that he changed his decision due to the strong public demand for the scrutiny of political leaders who had indulged in malpractice in the past (a large number of both PNA and PPP members had asked General Zia to postpone the elections). Thus the "retribution first, elections later," PNA policy was adopted. A Disqualification Tribunal was formed and several individuals who were once Members of Parliament were charged with malpractice and disqualified from participating in politics at any level for the next seven years. A White Paper document was issued, incriminating the deposed Bhutto government on several counts.

Reign as Chief Martial Law Administrator

The Doctrine of Necessity

Nusrat Bhutto, the wife of the deposed Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, filed a suit against General Zia's military regime, challenging the validity of the July 1977 military coup. The Supreme Court of Pakistan ruled, in what would later be known as the Doctrine of Necessity, that, given the dangerously unstable political situation of the time, General Zia's overthrowing of the Bhutto government was legal on the grounds of necessity. The judgment tightened the general's hold on the government.
Assumption of the Post of President of Pakistan

Despite the dismissal of most of the Bhutto government, the President of Pakistan, Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry, was persuaded to continue in office. After completing his term, and despite General Zia's insistence to accept an extension as President, Mr Chaudhry resigned, and General Zia also assumed the office of President of Pakistan on September 16, 1978. As acting Chief Martial Law Administrator and President of Pakistan, General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq cemented his position as the undisputed ruler of the country.
The Hanging of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto

On April 4, 1979, the former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was hanged, after the Supreme Court upheld the death sentence as passed by the Lahore High Court. The High Court had given him the death sentence on charges of the murder of the father of Ahmed Raza Kasuri, a dissident PPP politician. Despite many clemency appeals from foreign leaders requesting Zia to commute Bhutto's death sentence, Zia dismissed the appeals as "trade union activity" and upheld the death sentence.
Stabilization of Balochistan

Declaration of an Amnesty

On assuming power, General Zia inherited armed secessionist uprisings in Pakistan's largest province, Balochistan, from the Bhutto era. Tribal unrest and feudal clashes were moving the province towards a precarious position. The general acted quicky, offering a general amnesty to those who gave up arms and moving for the appeasement of the tribals. When this had little effect on the prevailing situation there, Zia withdrew troops from the province, ending much of the civil disobedience movements.
Appointment of Rahimuddin Khan as Martial Law Governor

Zia then appointed General Rahimuddin Khan, whose previously distinguished career made him stand out among his peers, to the post of Martial Law Governor of Balochistan (and later Governor of Sindh). General Rahimuddin then embarked on a provincial policy that completely isolated feudal families from the government. His authoritarian rule crushed any remaining civil unrest within Balochistan.
This garnered controversy over Zia's appointing of the dictatorial Rahimuddin, as the latter would go on to concentrate power solely with the provincial military regime and mostly act independently of the central government. The controversy eventually dissipated after the impressive progress Balochistan went through during Rahimuddin's lengthy rule (1978-1984), which was to remain characterized by the isolation of feudal families from provincial policy.
Reign as President of Pakistan

Formation of Majlis-e-Shoora

Main article: Majlis-e-Shoora
In the absence of a Parliament, General Zia decided to set up an alternative system. He introduced Majlis-e-Shoora in 1980. Most of the members of the Shoora were intellectuals, scholars, ulema, journalists, economists and professionals belonging to different fields of life. The Shoora was to act as a board of advisors to the President. The idea of establishing this institution was not bad but the main problem was that all 284 members of the Shoora were to be nominated by the President and thus there was no room for dissention.
Referendum of 1984

General Zia eventually decided to hold elections in the country. But before handing over the power to the public representatives, he decided to secure his position as the head of state. A referendum was held in December 1984, and the option was to elect or reject the General as the future President. The question asked in the referendum was whether the people of Pakistan wanted Islamic Sharia law enforced in the country. According to the official result, more than 95 percent of the votes were cast in favor of Zia-ul-Haq, thus he was elected as President for the next five years. However, they were marred by allegations of widespread irregularities and techinical violations of the laws and ethics of democratic elections.
The Eighth Amendment and Elections of 1985

After being elected President, Zia-ul-Haq decided to hold elections in the country in February 1985 on a non-party basis. Most of the opposing political parties decided to boycott the elections but election results showed that many victors belonged to one party or the other. To make things easier for himself, the General nominated the Prime Minister from amongst the Members of the Assembly. To many, his nomination of Muhammad Khan Junejo as the Prime Minister was because he wanted a simple person at the post who would act as a puppet in his hands. Before handing over the power to the new Government he made certain Amendments in the Constitution and got them endorsed from the Parliament before lifting the state of emergency in the county. Due to this Eighth Amendment in the Constitution, the powers of the President were increased to an absolute level on the plea of safeguarding national integrity.
Success in Economic Reform

Under Zia, the previous ruler Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's nationalization policies were slowly reversed, and gradual privatization took place. General Zia greatly favored egalitarianism and industrialization. His reign saw, between 1980 and 1988, the increase of industrial production by nine percent, as well as an annual growth in Gross Domestic Product by six percent, among the highest in the world.
Consolidation of Pakistan's Nuclear Programme

President Zia sought and substantially contributed to the attaining of nuclear capability for Pakistan. Accordingly, the country was made a subject of attack om platforms of international organizations for not signging the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Zia deftly neutralized international pressure by tagging Pakistan's nuclear programme to the nuclear designs of neighbouring India. The President then drew a five-point proposal as a practical rejoinder to world pressure on Pakistan to sign the NPT, the points including the renouncing of the use of nuclear weapons. Despite this, he also openly funded a uranium-enrichment plant based in Kahuta under Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan.
Involvement in the Soviet-Afghan War

The Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan

On December 25, 1979, the Soviet Union, a superpower at the time, invaded Afghanistan. General Zia, as President of neighboring Pakistan, was asked by several cabinet members to not interfere in the war, owing to the military power of the USSR at the time. The Islamist General Zia, however, was ideologically opposed to Communism taking over a neighboring country, and made no secret about his intentions of monetarily and militarily aiding the Afghan resistance, or Mujahideen.
International Standing Enhancement and Resumption of Aid

President Zia's international standing greatly rose after his declaration to fight the Soviet invaders, as he went from being portrayed as just another military dictator to a champion of the free world by the Western media. Indeed, Pakistan-United States relations, which had hit a low-point after the burning down of a Pakistan-based US Embassy by fundamentalists in 1979, took a much more positive turn. U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance, cut off U.S. aid to Pakistan on the grounds that Pakistan had not made sufficient progress on the nuclear issue. Then, on December 27, 1979, the Soviets invaded Afghanistan, and Carter offered Pakistan $325 million in aid over three years. Zia rejected this as "peanuts." Carter also signed the finding in 1980 that allowed less than $50 million a year to go to the Mujahideen. After Ronald Reagan came to office, defeating Carter for the US Presidency in 1980, all this changed. Aid to the Afghan resistance, and to Pakistan, increased substantially. The United States, faced with a rival superpower looking as if it were to create another Communist bloc, now engaged Zia to fight a US-aided war by proxy in Afghanistan against the Soviets.
Fighting the War by Proxy

President Zia now found himself in a position to demand billions of dollars in aid for the Mujahideen from the Western states, famously dismissing a United States proposed 325 million dollar aid package as "peanuts". Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence and Special Service Group now became actively involved in the conflict, and in cooperation with the CIA and the United States Army Special Forces supported the armed struggle against the Soviets.
After succeeding Jimmy Carter in 1980, Ronald Reagan became the new President of the United States of America. Reagan was completely against the Soviet Union and its Communist satellites, dubbing it "the Evil Empire". Reagan now increased financial aid heading for Pakistan. Then, in 1981, the Reagan Administration sent the first of forty F-16 jet fighters to the Pakistanis. But the Soviets kept control of the Afghan skies until the Mujahideen received Stinger missiles in 1986. From that moment on, the Mujahideen's strategic position steadily improved.
Accordingly, the Soviets declared a policy of national reconciliation. In January they announced that a Soviet withdrawal was no longer linked to the makeup of the Afghan government remaining behind. Pakistan, therefore, played a large part in the eventual withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan in 1988.
General Zia-ul-Haq's Islamization

Main article: Zia-ul-Haq's Islamization On December 2, 1978, on the occasion of the first day of the Hijra calendar to enforce the Islamic system in Pakistan in a nationwide address, General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq accused politicians of exploiting the name of Islam saying: "Many a ruler did what they pleased in the name of Islam."
After assuming power the task that the government set to was its public commitment to enforce Nizam-e-Islam (Islamic System) a 180 degree turn from Pakistan's predominantly Anglo-Saxon Law. As a preliminary measure to establish an Islamic society in Pakistan, General Zia announced the establishment of Shariah Benches.
Under Offenses Against Property (Enforcement of Hudood Ordinance 1979), the punishment of imprisonment or fine, or both, as provided in the existing Pakistan Penal Code for theft, was substituted by the amputation of the right hand of the offender from the joint of the wrist by a surgeon. For robbery, the right hand of the offender from the wrist and his left foot from the ankle should be amputated by a surgeon. Hudood also transliterated Hadud, Hudud; plural for Hadh, limit, or restriction) is the word often used in Islamic social and legal literature for the bounds of acceptable behaviour.
In legal terms (Islamic law being usually referred to as Sharia) the term is used to describe laws that define a level of crime classification. Crimes classified under Hudud are the most severe of crimes, such as murder, theft, and adultery. There are minor differences in views between the four major Sunni madhhabs about sentencing and specifications for these laws. It is often argued that, since Sharia is God's law and states certain punishments for each crime, they are immutable. However, with liberal movements in Islam expressing concerns about hadith validity, a major component of how Islamic law is created, questions have arisen about administering certain punishments. Incompatibilities with human rights in the way Islamic law is practised in many countries has led many to call for an international moratorium on the punishments of Hudud laws until greater scholarly consensus can be reached. It has also been argued by some, that the Hudud portion of Sharia is incompatible with humanism or human rights.
Drinking of wine (i.e. all alcoholic drinks) was not a crime at all under the Pakistan Penal Code. In 1977, however, the drinking and selling of wine by Muslims was banned in Pakistan and the sentence of imprisonment of six months or a fine of Rs. 5000/-, or both, was provided in that law.
Under the Zina Ordinance the provisions relating to adultery were replaced as that the women and the man guilty will be flogged, each of them, with a hundred stripes, if unmarried. And if they are married they shall be stoned to death.
The Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and the Criminal Procedure Code were amended, through ordinances in 1980, 1982 and 1986 to declare anything implying disrespect to Muhammad, Ahle Bait (family of the Prophet Muhammad), Sahaba (companions of the Prophet Muhammad) and Sha'ar-i-Islam (Islamic symbols), a cognizable offence, punishable with imprisonment or fine, or with both.
Dismissal of the Junejo Government and Call for Fresh Elections

As time passed, the Parliamentarians wanted to have more freedom and power. By the beginning of 1988, rumors about the differences between Prime Minister Junejo and President Zia were rife. On May 29, 1988, President Zia dissolved the National Assembly and removed the Prime Minister under article 58(2) b of the amended Constitution. Apart from many other reasons, Junejo's decision to sign the Geneva Accord against the wishes of General Zia, and his open declarations of removing any military personnel found responsible for an explosion at a munitions dump at Ojhri earlier in the year, proved to be some of the major factors responsible for his removal.
After eleven years, General Zia-ul-Haq once again promised the nation that he would hold fresh elections within the next ninety days. The late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's daughter Benazir Bhutto had returned from exile earlier in 1986, and had announced contesting the elections. With Benazir's popularity growing, and a decrease in international aid following the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, Zia was trapped in a difficult political situation.

The August 17th Air-Crash

As he was grappling with these problems, however, General Zia-ul-Haq died in a plane crash on August 17, 1988. After witnessing a tank inspection in Bahawalpur, Zia had left the small town in Punjab province by C-130 Hercules aircraft. Shortly after a smooth take-off, the control tower lost contact with the aircraft. Witnesses who saw the plane in the air afterwards claim it was flying erratically. Directly afterwards, the aircraft nosedived before exploding in mid-air, killing General Zia and several other senior army generals, as well as American Ambassador to Pakistan Arnold Raphael.
Funeral and Tributes Paid by World Leaders

General Zia's funeral was held on 19th August in Islamabad, the country's capital. Millions of Pakistanis attended the funeral to pay their last respects to the late general, as well as many foreign dignitaries. Also in attendance was his successor as President of Pakistan, Ghulam Ishaq Khan, who had earlier officially announced Zia's death via national address. His remains were housed in a small tomb outside the King Faisal Mosque.
President Zia-ul-Haq was also paid rich tributes by world leaders. Some extracts are-:
  • "(His death) has caused a great loss to the Muslim ummah which, in absence of the late Pakistani president, has lost one of its greatest Mujahids and one of the most sincere, zealous and devoted Muslim leaders to the cause of the ummah."
The Royal Court of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
  • "President Zia was a statesman of world stature, and there should be a re-dedication to regional peace and reconstruction to which President Zia had dedicated himself. It is with profound grief that I hear news of his death."
Ronald Reagan, President of the United States
  • "President Zia had led his country with great distinction and courage at a vital period in the region's history. The free world owes him a debt of gratitude."
Margaret Thatcher, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
  • "He was an internationally acclaimed statesman and outstanding leader of Pakistan. He had all along attached great importance to China as well as furthering the friendly relations and cooperation between China and Pakistan. His death has deprived us of a respected old friend."
Yang Shangkun, President of the People's Republic of China
  • "There is no doubt that the Muslim nation of Pakistan had not since independence seen a person with such administrative calibre and with such pure and true policy, understanding and strong intention."
Ruhollah Khomeini, President of Iran
Controversial Reasons Behind the Crash

The tragic air-crash was, politically and militarily, the worst in Pakistan's history and unprecedented in military aircraft. His death is still a contentious topic in Pakistan. Many people do not believe that it was a simple accident, and hold either the United States or the Soviet Union responsible for Zia-ul-Haq's death. But no evidence has yet come to light to prove either hypothesis. Recently, John Gunther Dean, a former US ambassador to India, blamed the Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency, for orchestrating the assassination of Zia-ul-Haq, though he offered no proof for his allegation, made to the World Policy Journal. General Hamid Gul, who would become the Director-General of the ISI after General Zia's death, stated that the US Central Intelligence Agency was behind the plane crash. Some theories have gone on to say that it was an act in coordination with the Soviet KGB and the American CIA. The perpetrators, however, have not been proven as yet.[1]

General Zia-ul-Haq's most enduring legacy was his fighting the Soviet-Afghan War by proxy, in an alliance with the Afghan resistance, the Mujahideen, against the invading USSR. His open accepting of financial aid from the United States of America to fight the Soviet Union helped in ending an already struggling Détente. He was then instrumental in providing military aid to Mujahideen fighting in Afghanistan against Soviet occupation and then later diverting them to the Kashmir cause in the late 1980s. His major contributions to the resistance movement greatly aided in complete Soviet withdrawal by 1988, which perhaps stopped a direct military invasion of Pakistan.
Another enduring legacy of his is the political system he left behind. After the partyless elections of February 1985, the Pakistan Constitution of 1973 was pulled out of cold storage, and on its back, a series of amendments giving absolute powers to the president were grafted to dismantle any future democratic set up at will. Since then the presidential powers have been used three times to disband elected assemblies. In May 1988 he himself sacked Prime Minister Muhammad Khan Junejo and dissolved the elected assemblies while President Ghulam Ishaq Khan sacked Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and disbanded the national and provincial assemblies, later doing the same again with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was again sacked by President Farooq Leghari using the same powers.
Zia's era also marked the most stable period for Pakistan's largest province, Balochistan, in the history of the country. This was mostly due to his appointing General Rahimuddin Khan as Martial Law Governor of Balochistan. Rahimuddin's efficient and iron-fisted rule completely subdued the militancy, and also prevented an influx of drugs and weaponry in the Balochistan from Afghanistan. Calls for secession, which were in excess during the rule of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, were brought under control, and civil disobedience was also put down by indirect military action under the authoritarian Rahimuddin.
His reign also witnessed the rise to prominence of several conservative politicians who would later rule the country, including Nawaz Sharif, Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain, and Zafarullah Khan Jamali (all of whom would later hold the post of Prime Minister of Pakistan). General Zia also revived and endorsed Pakistan's current ruling political party, Pakistan Muslim League. By 2002, the party broke into several splinter factions, the majority of which became structurally united again in 2003 under Pakistan Muslim League (Q), including Pakistan Muslim League (Z), which was named after Zia.
General Zia also militarized the bureaucracy systematically. By his government's orders, 5 % of all new posts in the higher civil civil service were to be filled by army officers who, consequently, occupied important civilian positions. Successive democratically elected governments did not rescind this order due to the power wielded by Pakistan Army. Under Pakistan's current military government, militarizing the bureaucracy is again pursued.
Zia's rule witnessed heightened tensions with neighbouring states. He was instrumental in providing military assistance to Mujahideen fighting in Afghanistan against Soviet Occupation and then later diverting them to the Kashmir cause in the late 1980s. During his time as President, Zia was also accused several times by Indian premier Indira Gandhi (and later Rajiv Gandhi) of training Sikh insurgents and sending them to destabilize India. The completion of the construction of the Karakoram Highway from Pakistan to China, the highest paved international road in the world, took place during his rule in 1978.
General Zia-ul-Haq's Islamization policy also proved to be extremely influential, and has continued to affect the political and sectarian situation in Pakistan till the present day. The nation's liberal elements claim that the late general's policy gave rise to previously unknown sectarianism and religious fanaticism within the country, citing, among others, the 1979-installed Hudood Ordinance. Pakistan's more conservative forces state that General Zia's Islamizing policies restored a sense of dignity and religious integrity back to the country. Although later governments under Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif set up commissions investigating the laws, they did not follow through on proposed amendments. The current government under Pervez Musharraf is also investigating the laws, despite opposition from the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, a coalition of religious political parties in Pakistan

Ghulam Ishaq Khan

Ghulam Ishaq Khan (born January 20, 1915) was President of Pakistan from August 17, 1988 until July 18, 1993.
Khan was born on January 20, 1915 in Bannu District of North-West Frontier Province to a Hindkowan family of Pashtun orgin. He completed his education in chemistry, and joined the Indian civil service prior to Pakistani independence. Upon independence, he was involved in irrigation projects in West Pakistan, and later went on to join the Finance Ministry, eventually becoming the Finance Minister.
In the 1985 elections, he won a Senate seat, shortly after which he was elected as Chairman of the Senate of Pakistan. Immediately after the death of Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq in 1988, Khan became acting President in accordance with the Constitutional rules of succession, and was formally elected to the position in December of that year. He held the position of President until 1993.
Khan reportedly vetoed the appointment of former Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Chief Hamid Gul as Army Chief, appointing the moderately reformist general Asif Nawaz Khan Janjua instead. Khan's presidency also saw the resignation of General Rahimuddin Khan from the post of Governor of Sindh, due to differences between the two after Khan started restricting Rahimuddin's vast amount of legislative power. Khan's presidency was also marked by his use of Eighth Amendment reserve powers to check the government. While the Prime Minister is the Head of Government, Khan was able to dismiss the governments of both Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif on charges of corruption, mismanagement, and nepotism, thereby triggering new elections, which the incumbent parties lost. The second dismissal of government exacerbated institutional and political opposition to Khan, leading to his resignation in 1993, and later to a constitutional amendment that reduced the Presidency to a figurehead.
Ghulam Ishaq Khan Institute of Engineering Sciences was set by him and it is located in Topi, North-West Frontier Province.

Wasim Sajjad

Wasim Sajjad (b. March 30, 1941) was President of Pakistan on two occasions, serving as interim President prior to elections.
Sajjad was born on March 30, 1941 in Jalandhar, Punjab (Now in India). His spent his childhood days at Army Burn Hall College where he completed his O Levels from. His father was a justice, and he would follow in his footsteps, becoming a lawyer, and attending Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship.
He secured Honors in Jurisprudence in 1966, and a Degree of Bachelor of Civil Law from Oxford University in 1967. He also did a M. A. from Oxford University in 1967. He obtained first position in Administrative Law at Oxford and his Barrister of Law from the Inner Temple, London. At London, Wasim Sajjad was also the President of the Oxford University Islamic Society in 1966, and President of the Oxford University Pakistan Society from 1965 to 1966. He was elected President Oxford University Birkenhead Society 1965-1967, and as Secretary of Wadham College, Oxford, in 1966. He later graduated in 1964.
His political career began in the 1980s when he was elected to the Pakistani Senate. He moved up to Chairman of the Senate, and served his first term as President in 1993, following the resignation of Ghulam Ishaq Khan. As interim president, Sajjad was essentially a placeholder for the office until elections were completed. He would run in the election for President, but was defeated by Farooq Leghari. In 1997, Sajjad was again made interim President and stepped down upon the election of Muhammad Rafiq Tarar.
Sajjad continues to serve in the Pakistani government, and is known for his conciliatory nature among parties.

Farooq Leghari

Sardar Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari (b. May 29, 1940) was President of Pakistan from November 14, 1993 until December 2, 1997.
Leghari was born in Choti zareen, a village of Dera Ghazi Khan, on May 29 of 1940. He comes from a political family that has been active in politics in this part of the world since the pre-colonial days. His father Sardar Muhammad Khan Leghari and grand father Sir Nawab Muhmammad Jamal Khan Leghari had both been ministers.
After his initial schooling at the "Eton" of Pakistan, Aitchison College, Lahore where he was the head boy and declared the Best Leaving Student of 1957. He graduated with honours from the Forman Christian College, Lahore where again he was amongst the best students, he went on to study at Oxford University.
After returning to Pakistan he joined the Civil Service and served for quite sometime in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). On the death of his father he resigned from service and came back to his roots to look after the tribal affairs of his tribe. He is the head of the Leghari tribe.
He joined the Pakistan Peoples Party, and was made the leader of that party upon the imprisonment of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. However, later Leghari was also imprisoned during the military regime of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq, only to be freed upon the death of the General.
In 1993, with the express support of his leader (Benazir Bhutto), he ran for President and won the election against Wasim Sajjad. During this time, his relationships with Benazir Bhutto and her husband Asif Ali Zardari gradually deteriorated, and reached their lowest level in November 1996, when he dismissed Benazir Bhutto's government on the pretext of lawlessness and extra judicial killings. The true reason of their falling out is believed to be more of a personal nature. The 1997 general elections brought Nawaz Sharif to power. Leghari and Sharif soon had a falling out and a personal power struggle ensued between them. Shortly after Nawaz Sharif's supporters ransacked the Supreme Court, Farooq Leghari was forced to resign.
Instead of retiring from politics, he went on to create his own political party, the Millat Party, which entered into a coalition of 7 parties, known as National Alliance, to participate in the general elections of 2002. The National Alliance, however, failed to appear as a dominant force in the elections, and won just 13 seats in the National Assembly, mostly his own family members. The political atmosphere of the time helped him in entering in a coalition with the majority party to form a government, and his son Awais Ahmed Leghari was made a federal minister for Telecom and IT, as a consequence, and another of his deputies Yar Mohammad Rind also was inducted in the Federal cabinet. Later Mohammaed Ali Durrani and his niece Sumaira Malik from his party were inducted into the Federal Cabinet. His elder son Jamal Leghari has recently been elected to the Senate of Pakistan. His daughter Faryal Leghari is an assistant researcher at the Gulf Research Center in Dubai.

Wasim Sajjad

Wasim Sajjad (b. March 30, 1941) was President of Pakistan on two occasions, serving as interim President prior to elections.
Sajjad was born on March 30, 1941 in Jalandhar, Punjab (Now in India). His spent his childhood days at Army Burn Hall College where he completed his O Levels from. His father was a justice, and he would follow in his footsteps, becoming a lawyer, and attending Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship.
He secured Honors in Jurisprudence in 1966, and a Degree of Bachelor of Civil Law from Oxford University in 1967. He also did a M. A. from Oxford University in 1967. He obtained first position in Administrative Law at Oxford and his Barrister of Law from the Inner Temple, London. At London, Wasim Sajjad was also the President of the Oxford University Islamic Society in 1966, and President of the Oxford University Pakistan Society from 1965 to 1966. He was elected President Oxford University Birkenhead Society 1965-1967, and as Secretary of Wadham College, Oxford, in 1966. He later graduated in 1964.
His political career began in the 1980s when he was elected to the Pakistani Senate. He moved up to Chairman of the Senate, and served his first term as President in 1993, following the resignation of Ghulam Ishaq Khan. As interim president, Sajjad was essentially a placeholder for the office until elections were completed. He would run in the election for President, but was defeated by Farooq Leghari. In 1997, Sajjad was again made interim President and stepped down upon the election of Muhammad Rafiq Tarar.
Sajjad continues to serve in the Pakistani government, and is known for his conciliatory nature among parties.

Muhammad Rafiq Tarar

Muhammad Rafiq Tarar (b. November 2, 1929) was President of Pakistan from January 1, 1998 until June 20, 2001.
During Pakistan's independence in 1947, Rafiq Tarar performed voluntary duty as a relief worker in camps set up by Muslim Students Federation for refugees, migrating from India to Pakistan. He belong to jatt family. Muhammad Rafiq Tarar graduated from the Islamia College in Gujranwala, in 1949. In 1951, Mr. Tarar secured his Law Degree from Law College, Lahore. During the same year he was enrolled as a Pleader. He also was enrolled as an Advocate in the Lahore High Court during October 1955. After graduating, he established a practice in Gujranwala before rising to the position of Chairman of the Punjab Labor Court in 1970. He was appointed as the Chief Justice of Lahore High Court four years later since he started. Earlier, during his days as Judge of the Lahore High Court, he also served as member of the Pakistan Election Commission. Justice Muhammad Rafiq Tarar was elevated as a Judge of the Supreme Court in 1991, from which he retired in November 1994 on attaining the age of 65 years.
Due to his retirement in March 1997, Tarar moved from a legal career to a political career. He was elected as member of Senate on P. M. L. (N) Party and later in the same year he was elected as the President of Pakistan on December 31, 1997.
During his presidency, Tarar was mostly a figurehead ruler. The Presidency of Pakistan's powers had been slowly removed over the years, culminating in 1997 Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan which removed virtually all remaining reserve powers, making the office almost entirely symbolic in nature.
Tarar was not removed from office when Pervez Musharraf seized control of the Pakistani government in 1999. While Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was deposed, Tarar was allowed to remain in office until 2001, at which point Musharraf assumed the presidency in an attempt to both gain legitimacy and restructure Pakistan's model of government to a more presidential system rule.

Pervez Musharraf

Pervez Musharraf born August 11, 1943 in Delhi, British India) is currently the President of Pakistan and the Chief of Army Staff of the Pakistani military. He took power on October 12, 1999 after a coup d'état and assumed the title of President of Pakistan on June 20, 2001.
Family background

General Musharraf's parents came from an educated middle class Syed family and both were college-educated. His mother, Begum Zehra Musharraf, studied English Literature. She worked for the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and retired in 1986. Syed Musharraf-ud-Din, Musharraf's father, was a graduate of Aligarh University in India. He joined Pakistan's Foreign Service in a clerical position and progressed in his career, retiring as a Section Officer in the Foreign Ministry. He spent several years in the capacity of support staff in the Pakistan Embassy in Ankara, Turkey where Musharraf spent part of his childhood and learned to speak fluent Turkish.
General Pervez Musharraf was born in Daryaganj in Delhi, India and after the independence of Pakistan, in 1947, his family settled in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan.
General Musharraf is married to Begum Sehba Musharraf and has one son and a daughter. His brother is a medical doctor in Chicago.

Musharraf attended Saint Patrick's High School, Karachi graduating in 1958 before going on to attend Forman Christian College in Lahore.
Military training

In 1961, he entered the Pakistan Military Academy at Kakul and was later commissioned into the Pakistan Artillery. A graduate of the Staff College, Quetta, and the National Defense College, Rawalpindi, General Musharraf also a graduate of the Royal College of Defence Studies, United Kingdom.

Military career

Musharraf participated in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971 as a Company Commander in the SSG Commando Battalion. Later he commanded Regiments of Artillery, there after an Infantry Brigade and then went on to command an Infantry Division.
In September 1987, heading a newly formed SSG at Khapalu base (Kashmir), he launched an unsuccessful assault to capture the Indian held posts of Bilafond La in Siachen Glacier. [1]
On promotion to the rank of Major General on January 15, 1991, he was assigned the command of an Infantry Division. Later, on promotion to Lieutenant General on October 21, 1995 he took over command of the elite Strike Corps of the Pakistan Army. In 1998, following the resignation of General Jehangir Karamat, he was promoted to General and took over as the Chief of Army Staff In 1999, he led the Pakistan Army during the Kargil Conflict.Gen Musharaf also attended SSG and was also the trainer of Pakistani commandos.
Role in Kargil Conflict

From April to June, 1999, Pakistan and India were involved in the Kargil Conflict in which Musharraf was Pakistan's Army chief. This conflict resulted in eventual mistrust between civil and military leaderships and this division ultimately saw the demise of democratic system in Pakistan. Many believed that he masterminded the Kargil War.
Coup d'état and election

Musharraf became de facto Head of Government (using the title Chief Executive and assuming extensive powers) of Pakistan following a bloodless coup d'état on 12 October 1999. That day, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif attempted to dismiss Musharraf and install ISI director Khwaja Ziauddin in his place. Musharraf, who was out of the country, boarded a commercial airliner to return to Pakistan. Senior Army generals refused to accept Musharraf's dismissal. Sharif ordered the Karachi airport to prevent the landing of the airliner, which then circled the skies over Karachi. In the coup, the generals ousted Sharif's administration and took over the airport. The plane landed with only a few minutes of fuel to spare, and Musharraf assumed control of the government. Sharif was put under house arrest and later exiled. He and other democratic leaders have subsequently been prevented from entering Pakistan. The existing President of Pakistan, Rafiq Tarar, remained in office until June 2001. Musharraf formally made himself President on June 20, 2001, just days before his scheduled visit to Agra for talks with India.

Referendum held: Supreme Court orders elections

Shortly after Musharraf's takeover, several people filed court petitions challenging his assumption of power. On May 12, 2000, the Supreme Court of Pakistan ordered Musharraf to hold general elections by October 12, 2002. In an attempt to legitimize his presidency and assure its continuance after the approaching restoration of democracy, he held a referendum on April 30, 2002 to extend his presidential term to five years after the October elections. However, the referendum was boycotted by the majority of Pakistani political groupings, which later complained that the elections were heavily rigged, and voter turnout was 3% or below by most estimates. A few weeks later, Musharraf went on TV and apologized to the nation for "irregularities" in the referendum.
Musharraf also forcibly removed many of the Supreme Court Justices who had voted against his usurpation of power. These included Justice Taqi Usmani, a world authority on International financial law and Constitutional law. Newspaper editors who were critical of Musharraf, such as the editor of the Balochistan Post, have also been exiled.
General elections were held in October, 2002 and a plurality of the seats in the Parliament were won by the PML-Q, a pro-Musharraf party consisting of feudal landlords whose power and hold on politics Musharraf had promised to destroy. However, parties opposed to Musharraf effectively paralysed the National Assembly for over a year. The deadlock ended in December 2003, when Musharraf made a deal with the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal party, an alliance of Islamic parties sympathetic to Talibans agreeing to leave the army by December 31, 2004. He subsequently refused to keep his promise. With that party's support, pro-Musharraf legislators were able to muster the two-thirds supermajority required to pass the Seventeenth Amendment, which retroactively legalized Musharraf's 1999 coup and many of his decrees.
Electoral College victory

In a vote of confidence on January 1, 2004, Musharraf won 658 out of 1,170 votes in the Electoral College of Pakistan, and according to Article 41(8) of the Constitution of Pakistan, was "deemed to be elected" to the office of President until October 2007.
After September 11, 2001

Support for the War on Terrorism

Following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States, Musharraf sided with the United States against the Taliban government in Afghanistan, after an ultimatum by the United States. Musharraf agreed to give the United States the use of three airbases for Operation Enduring Freedom. Secretary of State Colin Powell and other administration officials met with Musharraf. Musharraf's reversal of policy and help to the U.S. military was necessary in the U.S. bombing that rapidly overcame the Taliban regime.
Tensions with India

On December 13, 2001, a group of militants attacked India's Parliament with bombs and guns. India, blaming Pakistan for the attack, mobilized for a potential war. Musharraf denied any Pakistani involvement with the attacks.
Intense pressure from Washington followed. The Washington Post (Jim Hoagland, January 17) said that "the United States extracted promises from Gen. Musharraf that Pakistan's intelligence service and army will cease giving food, weapons and other logistical help to infiltrators who carry out raids into India and Indian-controlled Kashmir. The army will no longer provide mortar fire to cover the militants, who have been cut adrift by Musharraf".
Denouncing extremism

On January 12, 2002, Musharraf gave a landmark speech against Islamic extremism. Musharraf unequivocally condemned all acts of terrorism, including those carried out in the name of freeing Kashmir's Muslim majority from Indian rule. He also pledged to combat Islamic extremism and lawlessness within Pakistan itself. However, the speech was not followed by concrete action. While certain Islamic parties were banned, they quickly changed their name and continued their activities. The Pakistani Government has ignored them for the most part, leading to considerable cynicism regarding Musharraf's statements in both Afghanistan and India.
Dual-office controversy

A pro-Musharraf party, the PML-Q, won a plurality in the elections of October 2002, and formed a majority coalition with independents and allies such as the MQM. Nevertheless, the opposition parties effectively deadlocked the National Assembly, refusing to accept the legitimacy of Musharraf's authority. In December 2003, as part of a compromise with the main Islamist opposition group, the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, an alliance of Islamist radicals including the Jammat Islami whose leaders have known links to bin Laden, General Musharraf said he would step down as Army Chief by January 1, 2005. He again did not honour his promise and kept the post of the President with weak excuses. In return, the MMA agreed to support a constitutional amendment that would retroactively legalize Musharraf's coup, and restore some formal checks and balances to Pakistan's system of government.
In late 2004, however, pro-Musharraf legislators passed a bill allowing Musharraf to keep both offices, and Musharraf announced that he intended to hold on to both.
Views and perceptions of Musharraf

Musharraf is considered a moderate leader by Western governments. Many believe that Musharraf is sincere in his desire to bridge the Islamic and Western worlds and has previously spoken strongly against the idea of the inevitability of a 'clash of civilisations' between them. Furthermore, he has coined the phrase of "Enlightened Moderation" and is believed to be an ardent promulgator of the same. Musharraf's emotional ties to the United States may be conjectured to be significant since at least two close members of his family live there: his brother, a doctor, lives near Chicago, Illinois and his son, who lives in Boston, Massachusetts. Musharraf's son, Bilal runs a venture funded high-tech startup in Boston. Musharraf's only other child, a daughter, is a graduate of the National College of Arts in Lahore and is an architect. Musharraf's elder brother, Javed Musharraf, a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, was a CSP officer in the Government of Pakistan prior to retiring from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in Rome, Italy.
Musharraf's views considered relatively liberal

Musharraf was raised in a family that is considered liberal by Pakistani standards. The women of the family are unsequestered and seen and photographed in public without veils. His mother worked for the ILO and was friends with well-known Pakistani liberals. His daughter is an architect.
Shortly after coming to power, and on numerous occasions afterwards, Musharraf expressed admiration for the secularist reformer of Turkey, Kemal Atatürk, outraging religious radicals in the country. However in Parliament he was in alliance with the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal an Islamic alliance, some of whose leaders still publicly support the Taliban regime. Additionally, Musharraf has expressed admiration for the long-time 1980s Martial Law dictator of Balochistan, General Rahimuddin Khan, whose reign witnessed controversy over his conservative, authoritarian style of government, as well as unprecedented stability and economic expansion.
At the same time, the conduct and procedure of national elections in Pakistan has been criticised by Human Rights groups within Pakistan, including the world renowned human rights activist, Asma Jehangir.
Furthermore, Musharraf was initially promoted in the Pakistani Army based on his hardline religious affiliation to the Deoband school. This and his ties to hardline Islamic groups are often held out as a counterpoint to claims of liberalism.
Partner in the War on Terror

Since his involvement as a senior officer of Pakistan's special forces during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, Musharraf has had excellent personal relations with several sections of the US security establishment.
It is widely believed that Musharraf was coerced by the United States into turning his back on his former allies, the Taliban government of Afghanistan. Certainly his speeches on national television expressed his belief that he 'had no choice' but to act in unison with the United States.
Musharraf's support for the USA was indispensable in defeating the Taliban in Afghanistan with the ease that it was routed. This was done after his swift and strategically sound decision to cease Pakistan's long-running support of the Taliban. Pakistan cut the Taliban's oil and supply lines, provided intelligence and acted as a logistics support area for Operation Enduring Freedom. It has also allowed US forces to operate inside Pakistan, and Pakistani forces especially the military controlled Inter Services Agency have been implicated in the use of torture on suspected militants. Musharraf has also launched a major military offensive in the tribal region of Wana, displacing many resident families in the hunt for militants, and has caused a national insurgency movement made up of disaffected militants and former residents of Wana whose homes were demolished by the army in its heavy bombing campaign.
Musharraf speaks fluent English and has given many interviews and speeches on various US and European TV channels and other media. He is also known for giving contrasting views in his interviews. He has spoken at think tanks such as the RAND Corporation in Santa Monica, California, in June 2003. His support for the US-led War on Terror has been a cause for increasing public support for right-wing Islamic parties in Pakistan. The US's image in Pakistan has suffered ostensibly after the war in Iraq without an authorising UN resolution. Musharraf has bluntly refused to send any Pakistani troops to Iraq without a UN resolution and also due to public pressure in Pakistan.
Assassination attempts

On December 14, 2003, General Musharraf survived an assassination attempt when a powerful bomb went off minutes after his highly-guarded convoy crossed a bridge in Rawalpindi. It was the third such attempt during his four-year rule. 11 days later, on December 25, 2003, two suicide bombers tried to assassinate Musharraf, but their car bombs failed to kill the president; 16 others nearby died instead. Musharraf escaped with only a cracked windscreen on his car. It has been reported that Amjad Hussain Farooqi is suspected of being the mastermind behind these attempts, and there was an extensive manhunt for him, ending with Farooqi's death.
Elections during Musharraf's administration

On 12 May 2000, the Supreme Court of Pakistan ordered Musharraf to hold national elections by 12 October 2002, Elections for local governments took place in 2001. Elections for the national and provincial legislatures were held in October 2002, with no party winning a majority. In November 2002, Musharraf handed over certain powers to the newly elected Parliament. The National Assembly elected Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali as Prime Minister of Pakistan, who in turn appointed his own cabinet.
On January 1, 2004 Musharraf won a confidence vote in the Electoral College of Pakistan, consisting of both houses of Parliament and the four provincial assemblies which are dominated by the landed elite of the country, most of whom have been given governmental posts under Musharraf. Musharraf received 658 out of 1170 votes, a 56% majority, but many opposition and Islamic members of parliament walked out to protest the vote. As a result of this vote, according to Article 41(8) of the Constitution of Pakistan, Musharraf was "deemed to be elected" to the office of President. His term now extends to 2007.
Prime Minister Jamali resigned on 26 June 2004. His resignation is widely believed to be on the command of General Pervez Musharraf. Jamali, in the first place was appointed by Musharraf, who controls the PML(Q). He formed PML(Q) by horsetrading with different parties (largely the PML(N) and the PPPP). Most of the ministers of the cabinet were senior members of other parties, who joined PML(Q) after the elections just because Musharraf promised them important offices in the government. Musharraf replaced Jamali due to his poor performance and in his place Musharraf appointed Shaukat Aziz, a former Vice President of Citibank and head of Citibank Private Banking as the new prime minister. Musharraf choose Shaukat Aziz due to his successful measures in revitalizing Pakistan's economy as the Finance Minister. The new government is mostly supportive of Musharraf, who remains the President and Head of State in the new government. Musharraf continues to be the active executive of Pakistan, especially in foreign affairs. Although whether he stays the president after he gives up the post of Chief of Army staff is still to be seen.
Nuclear proliferation

Recently, Musharraf has come under fire in the West after the disclosure of nuclear proliferation by Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, the metallurgist known as the father of Pakistan's bomb. Musharraf has denied knowledge of or participation by Pakistan's government or army in this proliferation despite deep domestic criticism for singularly vilifying Khan, a national hero. Musharraf continues to enjoy strong support of the White House and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. AQ Khan has been pardoned in exchange for cooperation in the investigation of his nuclear-proliferation network. The fate of those who were found to have conspired with Khan is yet to be decided.
Peace overtures with India

Musharraf was Chief of Army Staff at the time of Pakistani incursions into the Indian-held disputed territory of Kashmir (Kargil sector), in the summer of 1999. After suffering many reverses, the Pakistani Army was ordered to retreat. Some reports suggest that Musharraf retreated after huge pressure on the then Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif from the American President, who feared the conflict could turn into a nuclear catastrophe. However in a recent book co authored by ex-CENTCOM Commander in Chief, Anthony Zinni and Tom Clancy, the former alleges that Musharraf was the one who pushed Sharif to withdraw the Pakistani troops after being caught in a losing scenario.[2] According to an ex-official of the Musharraf government, Hassan Abbas, it was Musharraf who planned the whole operative and sold the idea to Nawaz Sharif. [3] The view that Musharraf wanted to attempt the Kargil infiltrations much earlier was also revealed by Former Pakistani PM Benazir Bhutto in an interview to a leading daily, where he had supposedly boasted that "he would hoist the flag of Pakistan atop the Srinagar Assembly" if his plan was executed [4] As the Kargil incident came just after the Lahore Peace Summit earlier that year, Musharraf was viewed with mistrust in India.
In the middle of 2004, Musharraf began a series of talks with India to solve the Kashmir dispute. Both India and Pakistan have the tactical capability to launch nuclear strikes on every city within each others' borders. The two countries are continuing to aggressively increase their nuclear capabilities by actively producing even more nuclear weapons and perfecting their missile technologies by routinely conducting tests of ever more sophisticated missiles.
Current issues up for discussion are;Siachin Glacier
["Satisfaction is death of Struggle"]
[Naseer Ahmed Chandio]
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