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Default Chronology of Pakistan

Chronology of Pakistan

The first session of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan was held on August 10 and the next day it unanimously elected Mohammad Ali Jinnah as its first President. Pakistan appears on the world map on August 14 and Mr. Jinnah was sworn in as the first Governor General. Liaquat Ali Khan becomes the first Prime Minister of Pakistan.

Jinnah died on September 11. Khawaja Nazimuddin becomes the Governor General and Molvi Tamizuddin Khan elected as the Speaker of the Constituent Assembly.

On March 7, the Constituent Assembly approves the Objectives Resolution and appoints a Basic Principles Committee (BPC) to evolve the fundamental principles of the country's future constitution.

The BPC presents its interim report to the Constituent Assembly on September 28. But the report was hastily withdrawn amid scathing criticism from the religious groups as well as the protagonists of provincial autonomy.

On January 24, a conference of 31 prominent Ulema from different school of thoughts formulated 22 fundamental principles of the Islamic state. Liaquat Ali Khan was assassinated on October, 16, 1951. No one knows till now why he was assassinated, apparently, by a hired killer Said Akbar at a public meeting in Rawalpindi. Khawaja Nazimuddin steps down (or forced to step down) to become the Prime Minister on October 19. Malik Ghulam Mohammad, the Finance Minister, who had served as a civil servant in the Indian Audit Service, sworn in as Governor General.

The first ethnic riots in East Pakistan against attempts to make Urdu as the national language and lack of representation for Bengalis in central administration. The BPC presents the second revised report to the Constituent Assembly on November 23. The report called for a parity of representation between East and West Pakistan in parliament elected on the basis of separate balloting for minorities. It also recommended that no law would be made in violation of the tenets of the Quran and Sunnah.

Martial Law imposed in Lahore to control the sectarian riots against Qadianis. This was the first sectarian rioting in the country and the army was called for the first time to control a civil strife. Governor General, Malik Ghulam Mohammad, sacked Prime Minister Khawaja Nazimuddin (although he enjoyed confidence of the parliament) and appointed Mohammad Ali Bogra to form a government on April 17. Mr. Bogra was summoned by the G.G. from the Washington, where he was serving as Pakistan's ambassador.

Governor General, Ghulam Mohammad, declared emergency in the country and dissolved the Constituent Assembly on October 24. The Assembly had passed a bill in September which made the Governor General subservient to the advice of the Prime Minister. Mohammad Ali Bogra was again called to form a new government in which Commander-in-Chief of Pakistan Army, General Mohammad Ayub Khan, became the Defense Minister. He was the first serving C-in-C to join the cabinet. Pakistan joins Baghdad Pact (later known as Central Treaty Organization after the withdrawal of Iraq) and South East Asian Treaty Organization (SEATO), a US-sponsored military alliance to contain communism.

On May 10, the Federal Court, headed by Chief Justice Mohammad Munir, declared the dissolution of the Constituent Assembly as justified on the principle of state necessity. A new Constituent Assembly, elected on June 21, held its first meeting in Murree on July 7. The Muslim League, which had a majority in the first Constituent Assembly, had suffered a set-back and it had only 25 members in the second assembly. Mohammad Ali Bogra resigned and another bureaucrat, Chaudhry Mohammad Ali, was installed as Prime Minister in August. In October, Major General Iskandar Mirza becomes Governor General following the resignation of Ghulam Mohammad because of health reasons. On October 14, the four provinces of West Pakistan merged into One Unit, causing resentment among the smaller provinces.

On February 29, the Constituent Assembly approves a constitutional draft which came into effect on March 23. The constitution, based on the principle of "parity" between the two wings of the country, empowered the Federal government to strangulate the provinces. Iskandar Mirza becomes the first President of Pakistan. Hussein Shaheed Suhrawardy, who had refused to sign the 1956 constitution as a member of the Constituent Assembly, becomes Prime Minister in September to preserve and defend the same constitution.

In October, Ismael Ibrahim Chundrigar replaced Suharwardy as Prime Minister. He remained in office for only 59 days and was forced to resign in December. Malik Feroz Khan Noon succeeds Chundrigar as Prime Minister. He was the seventh Prime Minister in 10 years.

As the general elections under the 1956 constitution drew closer, President Iskandar Mirza, on October 7, abrogated the constitution and imposed martial law. On Oct. 27, the Supreme Court -- in Dosso case -- upheld the imposition of martial law as constitutional. The Chief Justice, Mohammad Munir, held that "a victorious revolution and a successful coup d' etat is an internationally recognized legal method of changing a constitution. On the same day President Iskandar Mirza was forced at gun point to step aside and hand over all power to General (later Field Marshal) Ayub Khan.

Oct. 27, on the first anniversary of his seizure of power, Ayub Khan announces the system of Basic Democracies, comprising 80,000 Basic Democrat Wards. Between December 1959 and January 1960 elections to the Basic Democrat units were held in both wings of the country. The elected members formed an Electoral College to elect the members of the provincial and national assemblies.

February 14, a referendum is held to elect the president. Ayub Khan, being the only candidate, received 95.6 per cent of the votes cast. On Feb. 17, Ayub Khan was sworn in as the "elected" president.

May 6, the Constitution Commission, appointed by President Ayub Khan, presents its report to the President. The Commission pinpoints the following as the cause of the failure of the parliamentary form of government in Pakistan: (a) lack of proper elections and defects in the constitution; (b) undue interference by the head of state in the ministries and political parties by the Central Government in the functioning of governments in the provinces; and (c) lack of leadership, resulting in the lack of well organized and disciplined parties, the general lack of character in politicians, and their undue interference in the administration.

March 1, Ayub Khan promulgates a constitution which sought to reinforce his authority in the absence of martial law. In April, Elections for the National and provincial assembly were held on the basis of Basic Democracies. July, the National Assembly passes the Political Parties Act, legalizing the formation of political parties.

To avert any possibility of political agitation, Ayub Khan, in January, amends the Political Parties Act, which provided that the politicians disqualified under the Elected Bodies Disqualification Ordinance (EBDO) would become liable to two years imprisonment if they indulged in any political activity. A list of fundamental rights which were incorporated in the constitution through the first Amendment. However, a rider clause excluded some subjects from the operation of the Act of Fundamental Rights. March 2, Pakistan and China sign a border agreement.

August, the National Assembly approves the Presidential Election Bill that called for holding of elections, on the basis of Basic Democracies, for the President, national and provincial assemblies in early 1965. According to the 1962 constitution, the first term of President Ayub was to expire on August 8, 1965.

January 2, Ayub Khan defeats his main opponent, Miss Fatima Jinnah in the presidential elections amid opposition accusations of mass rigging of the polls. September 6, the Indo-Pakistan war begins as India attacks Pakistan. The 17-day war, when the East Pakistan was left undefended, weakened the already fraying national ties between the two wings.

January 10, Pakistan and India sign an agreement in Tashkent to formally end the hostilities between the two countries. In February, the leader of the East Pakistan Awami League, Sheikh Mujibur Rehman announced his six points "charter for survival" that called for limiting the federal government to national defense and foreign affairs. December 31, the government lifts ban on the political activities of 65 prominent politicians under EBDO

April, a conference of opposition parties in Dhaka, forms the National Democratic Front and announces an eight-point political program that called for limiting the federal government powers to defense, foreign affairs, currency and federal finance and inter-provincial communications and trade. It also called for a parliamentary form of government elected on the basis of adult franchise.

November, students launch a nation-wide protest campaign against an ordinance which empowered the government to withdraw the degree of any student.

February 4, President Ayub Khan agrees to call a conference of politicians to discuss the political problems. On February 21, President Ayub Khan announces that he will not be a candidate in the next presidential elections. March 10-13, the government and opposition political leaders meet in Rawalpindi but failed to reach any significant decision. March 25, President Ayub Khan violates his own constitution, imposes martial law, and hands over power to the Commander-in-chief of the army, General Agha Mohammad Yahya Khan, amid mounting anti-government demonstrations demanding resignation of Ayub Khan. March 31, General Yahya assumes the office of President. November 28, General Yahya announces his plan to hold general elections on the basis of adult franchise.

March 29, General Yahya issued the Legal Framework Order, containing the rules relating to the holding of general elections and framing of the future constitution. June 30, One Unit dissolved in West Pakistan and the four provinces -- Baluchistan, North West Frontier Province, Punjab and Sindh -- restored. Elections scheduled to be held in October were postponed till December because of hurricane and floods in East Pakistan. December 7, elections for the National Assembly. December 17, elections for the provincial assemblies. The National Assembly elections accorded an overwhelming majority in the eastern wing to the Awami League (151 out of 162 seats) and to the Pakistan People's Party (81 out of 138 seats) in the western wing.

February 13, Yahya Khan announces that the first session of the National Assembly will be held in Dhaka on March 3. Feb. 17, the PPP leader Zulfikar Ali Bhutto announces that unless his party receives a positive and clear assurance from the East Pakistan Awami League leader, Sheikh Mujibur Rehman about the accommodation of the PPP's reasonable demands in the future constitution, he and his party would not attend the National Assembly session to be held in Dhaka. March 1, Yahya Khan, finding an excuse that the PPP, the largest party from West Pakistan, is not attending the session, postpones the first session of the National Assembly. March 16, Yahya and Mujib begin their constitutional negotiations, but under the facade of political talks, the junta completes its preparations for a military crackdown on the Bengalis. March 26, the Awami League declares the independence of Bangladesh. March 27, Sheikh Mujibur Rehman is arrested for treason. Yahya Khan orders military operation t o suppress anti-government civil and guerrilla movement. November 23, Indian forces attack East Pakistan to help Bengalis. December 3, Indian forces also attack West Pakistan. December 17, Pakistan army surrenders arms in Dkhaka and Bangladesh comes into existence. December 20, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto takes over as President and Chief Martial Administrator.

January 2, all major industries nationalized. Jan. 30, Pakistan quits the Commonwealth. April 20, the Supreme Court declares Yahya Khan's martial to be illegal. April 21, the interim constitution, drafted by the federal government, is introduced which limits the powers of the courts. May 11, Bhutto devalues rupee by 131 per cent and begins nationalization campaign. July 2, Pakistan and India sign Simla agreement to normalize relations. October, a special task force, the Federal Security Force created. November 20, Pakistan's first nuclear atomic reactor commissioned.

April 10, the National Assembly approves the constitution unanimously which comes into force on August 14. April, Baluchistan government dismissed and the NWFP government resigns in protest. Army sent into Baluchistan to deal with insurrection. August 28, Pakistan and India sign an agreement in New Delhi on the return of Pakistani POWs in India and Bangladeshis in Pakistan.

February 22-24, Bhutto hosts the second Islamic summit in Lahore. May 4, the first Constitution Amendment Act redefined the territories of Pakistan and the eastern wing was excluded. May 18, Bhutto talks about an "Islamic atom bomb" after India explodes a nuclear device. May 29, attack on Nishter Medical College students at Rabwa railway station sparks anti-Qadiani demonstrations. September 17, the second Constitution Amendment Act declares the Qadiani sect as non-Moslems. November 11, a PPP dissident, Ahmad Raza Qasuri files an First Information Report in Lahore, implicating Bhutto in the murder of his father Nawab Mohammad Ahmad Khan.

February 10, the National Awami Party banned. Feb. 17, the NWFP cabinet dissolved and the province placed under governor's rule. February 18, the third Constitution Amendment Act empowered the government to detain a person without trial upto three months. October 30, the Supreme Court declares the NAP as illegal and held that the party had never reconciled itself to the existence and ideology of Pakistan. November 21, the fourth Constitution Amendment Act amends 10 articles and two schedules. December 31, Baluchistan government suspended and governor's rule imposed.

September 13, the fifth Constitution Amendment Act amends 16 articles. December 31, the sixth Constitution Amendment Act amends four articles related to the retirement of the Supreme and High Court judges. December, Pakistan and Bangladesh establish diplomatic relations.

January 7, Bhutto announces mid-term polls and the nine opposition parties form the Pakistan National Alliance to contest the elections. March 10, the PNA, routed in the elections ( got only 36 out of 200 seats in the National Assembly while the opposition boycotted the provincial assembly elections in which the People's Party got 435 out of 460 seats ) accuses the Bhutto government of mass riggings in the elections and demands fresh polls and the immediate resignation of Bhutto. April 21, martial law imposed in Karachi, Hyderabad and Lahore amid violent anti-government demonstrations. May 16, the seventh Constitution Amendment Act, provided that the Prime Minister might seek a vote of confidence from the people through a referendum. The amendment also provided that a High Court could not exercise any jurisdiction under article 199 in relation to the areas where the army is called in aid of the civil administration. June 8, negotiations between the government and opposition lea ders begin. July 5, General Ziaul Haq, the hand-picked C-in-C stages a coup d'état but promises to hold elections within 90 days. October 1, General Zia announces postponement of elections until the "process of accountability has been completed." September 3, Bhutto is arrested in the murder case of Nawab Mohammad Ahmad Khan Qasuri. November 10, the Supreme Court, in Begum Nusrat Bhutto case, unanimously validates imposition of martial law under the doctrine of necessity.

March 18, Lahore High Court sentences Bhutto and four FSF officials to death in the murder case of Nawab Mohammad Ahmad Khan Qasuri. May 6, the Supreme Court begins hearing an appeal against the Lahore High Court verdict against Bhutto. September, President Chaudhry Fazal Ilahi retires as his term of office expires and General Zia becomes president.

February 6, the Supreme Court, in a majority decision, rejects appeal of Bhutto and four others. March 25, the Supreme Court rejects a review petition of all the five convicts. April 1, President General Ziaul Haq rejects the mercy petition and Bhutto is executed on April 4. February, General Zia, to legitimize military rule, begins the process of Islamization with the promulgation of Hudood Ordinances and established Shariah Benches. November 21, the US Embassy in Islamabad ransacked during the anti-US demonstrations. December 27, Soviet troops enter into Afghanistan and Pakistan becomes a front-line state for the west.

January, Pakistan hosts an emergency meeting of the Islamic Foreign Ministers to discuss the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan. May, full-fledged Federal Shariah Court established. June 30, Zakat and Ushr Ordinance promulgated.

February, Movement for Restoration of Democracy formed. March 24, General Zia promulgates a Provisional Constitutional Order, purported to validate everything done by him since its coup, virtually ending the independence of the judiciary -- 19 judges fired. July, Pakistan and US sign an agreement to provide Pakistan with $ 3.2 billion economic and military aid. August 30, Pakistan Steel Mill, built with the help of Soviet Union, inaugurated. October 20, the US Senate lifts ban on assistance to Pakistan imposed in 1979 over its nuclear program.

July, reporting of all political news banned as Movement for Restoration of Democracy demands elections and restoration of 1973 constitution.

Army sent into Sindh to suppress revolt against the military government.

December, General Zia holds a referendum on Islam to legitimize his dictatorial rule.

February, elections for the national and provincial assemblies are held on non-party basis. March 23, Mohammed Khan Junejo appointed as the civilian Prime Minister while martial law remains in force. November 9, the Majlis-e-Shoora (parliament) approved the controversial 8th amendment to the constitution under the threat of martial law. December 31, martial law lifted.

Junejo forms Muslim League parliamentary party in the parliament elected on the basis of non-party basis and formally allows the political parties to function. April, Benazir Bhutto returns to Pakistan to a tumultuous welcome in Lahore. 1987: May, Junejo government curtails the defense budget and limits certain benefits to the civilian and military bureaucracy. November, Foreign Minister, General Sahibzada Yaqub Ali Khan, replaced by Zain Nourani.

April 10, explosion at the Ojheri armament depot near Rawalpindi. April, 14, Pakistan signs on the agreement on the Soviet troops withdrawal from Afghanistan. May 29, Prime Minister Mohammad Khan Junejo, soon after his return from a foreign tour, sacked. June 3, Nawaz Sharif appointed the Chief Minister of the Punjab. July 20, General Zia announces that elections for the national assembly will be held on November 16. August 17, General Ziaul Haq dies in a C-130 plane crash and the Senate Chairman Ghulam Ishaq Khan takes over as the acting president. November 16, Benazir Bhutto's PPP emerges as the largest party in the general elections. December, Benazir sworn in as the Prime Minister; Ghulam Ishaq Khan elected as the President; Nawaz Sharif forms government of the Punjab province; Baluchistan Assembly dissolved.

January, law and order situation starts deteriorating amid bomb explosions in the Punjab and decoits activities in the Sindh province. March, Benazir's federal government, fails to topple the government of Nawaz Sharif in the Punjab province through vote of no-confidence despite horse trading. August, President Ghulam Ishaq Khan foils Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's attempt to remove the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Sirhoney. November 1, the combined opposition unsuccessfully moves a motion of no-confidence against Benazir's government but she found her support had dwindled from 148 to 119 in the National Assembly. December, Differences between Prime Minister Benazir and President Ghulam Ishaq Khan emerge over the of appointment of the Supreme Court Justice.

January, the Baluchistan High Court restores the provincial assembly. May 27, security forces open fire at a crowd of Mohajirs emerging from Hyerabad's Pucca Qila fort, killing 28 women and children according to official accounts. July, Benazir government declines to give judicial powers to the army to restore law and order in the Sindh province. August 6, Benazir's government sacked and the national and provincial assemblies dissolved. October, the Islamic Jamhoori Ittehad captures majority seats in the National Assembly and Nawaz Sharif becomes Prime Minister.

National Finance Commission constituted to make recommendation on arrangements for the distribution of domestically mobilized resources between the federal and provincial governments. Indus Water Apportionment Treaty divides the water resources among the four provinces. Cooperative societies scam in which the politicians robbed the national development financial institutions of over 29 billions rupees. June, the National Assembly approves the Shariah Act. July, the 12th amendment of the constitution takes away the writ jurisdiction of the High Courts and the Supreme Court in cases that are to be tried before the various Special Courts and provided for an increase in salaries and allowances for the judges of the High Courts and the Supreme Court.

January 2, the Federal Shariah Court declares riba (interest) as un-Islamic. May 19, the army called out to restore deteriorating law and order in the Sindh province. June 19, General Asif Nawaz Janjua launches a "cleanup operation" in the interior of Sindh as well as crackdown against the MQM. December 19, Benazir Bhutto leads the long march to Islamabad against the Nawaz government.

January, President Ghulam Ishaq Khan appoints General Abdul Waheed Chief of Army Staff, against the wishes of Nawaz Sharif. March, the Muslim League President, Mohammad Khan Junejo, dies and Nawaz Sharif nominated as the next party leader which divided the PML into Nawaz and Junejo groups. April 18, the president sacks Nawaz Sharif government and appoints Balkh Sher Mazari as the interim Prime Minister. April , Nawaz Sharif challenges his dismissal in the Supreme Court. May 26, the Supreme Court declares President's order as illegal and restores the Nawaz government. July, President Ghulam Ishaq Khan and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif resign under army pressure. Dr. Moeen Qureshi, a former World Bank Vice President takes over as Prime Minister. Oct. 6, none of the political parties get an-over all majority in the general elections but the PPP gets majority seats in the National Assembly as well as in the Punjab and Sindh provinces. Oct. 19, Benazir Bhutto sworn-in as Prime Ministe r for the second time. Nov. 13, Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari elected as the President.

February 27, the central government topples the Muslim League government of Pir Sabir Shah in the NWFP through horse trading and installs the PPP government. April, the arrest of the Mehran Bank Chief Executive Yunus Habib lifts the screen from one of the biggest financial scandals in Pakistan history that implicated politicians of the ruling and as well opposition parties and the army generals. November, army withdrawn from the Sindh province and replaced with Rangers, - under army officers' command - who launch a ruthless operation against the MQM (Altaf group).

February 22, the two Christians -- Salamat Masih and Rehmat Masih sentenced to death by a Sessions Judge for blasphemy -- acquitted from the charges by the Lahore High Court. April, the Terrorist Affected Areas (Special Courts) Act amended to provide that a statement or confession before a police officer of the rank of DSP and above, will be considered admissible in court. June, 280 people killed as rangers continue operation against the MQM in Karachi. September, the central government topples the PML/J government of Mian Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo but fails to install the PPP government and forced to accept Arif Nakai of the PML/J as a compromise Chief Minister. December, death toll reaches to 1800 in the anti-MQM operation, according to official count.

March 20:
The Supreme Court, in a land mark judgment, held that the consultation with the Chief Justices of the Supreme Court and the High Courts, in the appointment of judges to the Courts "should be effective, meaningful, purposive, consensus-oriented, leaving no room for complaint of arbitrariness or unfair play." The Supreme Court also directed the federal government to appoint permanent chief justices in higher courts where at present constitutional functions are being performed by acting chief justices appointed by the government. The SC judgment also upheld the rule of seniority in respect of the appointment of high court chief justices. The Court struck down Article 203-C of the constitution, (which provided for the transfer of judges to the Shariah Court) an amendment made by General Zia, on the ground of conflict with Article 209.

May 19:
The Supreme Court returns a constitutional reference, filed by the president three days earlier, against the apex court decision, saying it had not been signed by the President as required by the constitution. On the same day the federal government files a review petition against the Supreme Court decision.

May 26:
Supreme Court Judge Mir Hazar Khan Khoso announces his dissenting judgment which, inter alia, said that the President has the power under the constitution to appoint judges and that no time-limit can be fixed for filling in the permanent vacancies for judges in the superior courts.

June 13:
The chief justices of the Supreme Court and the four provincial High Courts ordered the sacking 24 judges -- all of whom were appointed by the Benazir government which had refused to sack those judges.

June 26:
The Supreme Court restored the PML (Nawaz Group) dominated, local municipal councils in Punjab, which were disbanded in 1993 before completion of their tenure. The next day, the Punjab Assembly passed in less than three hours, a bill to offset the Supreme Court order. The new legislation, which repealed the Punjab Local Government Ordinance, 1979, again dissolved the local bodies.

July 2:
Pakistan's press stages a strike to protest against the imposition of a General Sales Tax on newspapers and enhance import duty on news print.

Sept 7:
With external debt standing at $29.57 billion, Pakistan is the world's 18th most indebted country, according to World Debt Tables.

Sept 8:
LHC asks government counsel to inquire from the MI and FIU whether an Islamabad family missing for months is in their custody.

Sept 11:
Two sisters of Tando Bahawal village set themselves ablaze in front of the Suppression of Terrorist Activities Court in Hyderabad to protest against the delay in punishment to the army Major Arshad Jamil and others convicted of the murder of nine villagers.

Sept. 20:
Mir Murtuza Bhutto, 42, brother of Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and head of the Pakistan People's Party (Shaheed Bhutto group) was gunned down by the police near his 70 clifton residence in Karachi.

Sept 23
Four gunmen opened indiscriminate fire at a Fajr congregation at Al Khair mosque in Multan, killing 23 worshippers and wounding 50 others.

Oct. 17:
Baluchistan Assembly rejects resolution on giving Urdu national language status.

Oct. 22:
President's counsel tells Supreme Court that Mr. Leghari has been found not guilty of involvement in the Mehran Bank scandal by an inquiry committee.

Oct. 23:
Supreme Court stays LHC ruling that a Muslim woman cannot marry without the consent of her wali.

Oct. 24:
Feroza Begum of the MQM resigns from the Sindh cabinet, saying she had joined government to save her son's life: appears before the supreme Court.

Oct. 27:
Supreme Court rejects Capt Arshad Jamil's review petition He was sentenced to be hanged in the Tando Bahal massacre case.

Oct. 28:
Capt. Arshad Jamil is executed in Hyderabad.

Nov. 3:
The Lahore High Court restores the Watto government but asks him to seek a vote of confidence in 10 days while 85 PDF MPAs file a no-trust move against him.
-----------Supreme Court Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah says that in view of one of its rulings, it is proper for the president to repromulgate ordinances.

Nov. 4:
President Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari, exercising his powers under Article 58-2(b) of the constitution, dismissed the government of Benazir Bhutto and dissolved the National Assembly.

Nov. 18:
Ordinance to try the corrupt is promulgated: chief accountability commissioner to be appointed.

Nov. 19:
The Supreme Court returns former PM Benazir Bhutto's petition challenging the dissolution of the NA on the ground that it is objectionable and scandalous in parts.
----------The Supreme Court stays proceedings before the STA Court No. 2, Hyderabad, which had declared Mr. Mumtaz Ali Bhutto, caretaker CM Sindh, a proclaimed offender in a sedition case registered in 1986.

Nov. 20:
Ghulam Mujadaid Mirza, former chief justice of Lahore High Court is appointed as the Chief Accountability Commissioner.

Nov. 21:
Ms Bhutto submits amended petition against her dismissal to the Supreme Court.

Dec. 8:
The Mehran Bank Commission exonerates President Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari from any wrong doing in his land deal through the Mehran Bank chief Younis Habib. But the Commission did not mention to whom the land was sold by the President for Rs. 15 million and from which account the money was debited to make the payment.

Jan. 4:
The Jamat-e-Islami men withdraw their candidatures for the February elections.

Jan. 5:
Caretaker Prime Minister, Meraj Khalid, fears country's fragmentation in 20 years.

Jan. 6:
President Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari amended the rules of business to establish the Council for Defense and National Security (CDNS) providing a role of the army in the affairs of the government.

Jan. 12:
The Supreme Court upholds the 8th Amendment; terms Article 58(2(b as a deterrent to martial law.

Jan. 18:
Sipah-i-Sahaba Chief Maulana Ziaur Rehman Farooqi was killed along with 18 other people in a bomb blast in the Lahore Sessions Court. The next day the SSP activists protesting against the killing of their leader torched the Iranian Culture Center in Lahore

Jan. 26:
The Punjab government issues lists of defaulters: it includes 81 NA and 131 PA candidates.
* The president's counsel tells the Supreme Court that the central government was a partner in the extra judicial killings in Karachi.

Jan. 29:
The Supreme Court upholds the president's order dissolving the National Assembly and dismissing Ms Bhutto's government. PPP workers clash with the police outside the Supreme Court building. Ms Bhutto says the court verdict is timed to influence the election results.

Jan. 30:
The JUP joins the Jamaat-e-Islami in its call for boycotting the elections.
* The PML pays Rs. 1.7 million and the PPP gives Rs. 1.25 million to PTV for air time.

Feb. 1:
General Aslam Beg tells the Supreme Court that the ISI received Rs. 140 million during the 1990 elections.

Feb. 3:
The PML sweeps the polls in the Punjab; emerges strong in the NWFP as the largest single party. ANP-PML alliance gets 65 seats in the province. Imran Khan loses in all eight constituencies. Mustafa Khan, Sardar Asif Ahmad Ali, Maulana Fazlur Rahman, Yousef Raza Gilani, Nasrullah Khan, Ghinwa Bhutto were among prominent losers.
* PML, allies achieve two-thirds majority. In the Punjab, the PPP gets only two seats in the provincial elections. Election brings in 95 new faces in the Punjab Assembly.
* The tribal area go to the polls on the basis of adult franchise for the first time.

Feb. 4:
The HRCP says there is discrepancy in the number of votes cast and the results announced.

Feb. 5:
The PPP central executive committee rejects election results but said it will not launch any movement for the time being.
* The US State Department rejects allegations of electoral irregularities in the Pakistani elections.

Feb. 6:
LHC upholds formation CDNS, says it is up to parliament to retain or disband it.

Feb. 14:
PML and allied parties unanimously elect Mr. Nawaz Sharif as the parliamentary leader in the National Assembly with 146 MNAs attending.
* Maulana Fazlur Rahman, president of his own faction of the JUI alleges that the February elections were rigged.

The Human Rights Council of Pakistan declares that the February 3 elections were fair and impartial.

Feb. 17:
Nawaz Sharif sowrn-in as the Prime Minister of Pakistan.

Feb. 19:
Nawaz Sharif won a vote of confidence in the National Assembly with 177 against 16 votes.

Feb. 20:
The Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) formally assumed power in the Punjab with the swearing in of the prime minister's brother, Shahbaz Sharif, as chief minister. Unofficially, however, the party took control of the provincial administration the moment the Nakai government was dismissed.

Feb. 23:
In a nationwide speech the Prime Minister announces a "national debt retiring programme, urging the people donate and invest money in government's debt retiring schemes.
* He also shifts the weekly holiday from Friday to Sunday. The religious parties denounced the move as an attempt to erase this Islamic symbol.
* Benazir Bhutto appears before the judicial tribunal and claims that President Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari was behind his brother, Mir Murtuza Bhutto's assassination.

Feb. 24:
General Mirza Aslam Beg, tells the Supreme Court he was not answerable to it regarding the alleged funding of the IJI campaign in 1990.

March 2:
After scrutiny of nomination papers for Senate election, all the 12 PML candidates returned unopposed. Among those elected unopposed were two retired judges, Rafiq Ahmad Tarar and Afzal Loan who were on the Supreme Court bench that reinstated Nawaz Sharif as Prime Minister in May 1993.

March 3:
In a train crash near Khanewal, 129 people were killed and several others injured.
* U.S. identifies Pakistan as a major money-laundering country.

March 6:
The LHC holds that an adult sane girl is fully empowered to marry without her wali's (guardian's) consent.

March 9:
PM instructs election commission to give voting right to overseas Pakistanis.

March 10:
The Registration of Press & Publications Ordinance 1977 issued to curb freedom of press and expression. In its judgment in the Saima case, the LHC rules that a woman can marry without the wali's consent.

March 12:
In the Senate elections from Sindh Baluchistan and the NWFP, the PML wins 11 seats. Asif Ali Zardari of the PPP also gets in.

March 16:
Punjab provinces faces acute shortage of flour.

March 22:
Wasim Sajjad retains Senate chiarmanship.

April 1:
Section 58(2)B of the Eighth Amendment is deleted through the 13th Amendment passed by both Houses of parliament (79-0 and 190-0). It does away with the president's power to dissolve parliament. The PM also gets the power to appoint services chiefs and governors in that it will now be mandatory for the President to seek the former's advice in this regard.

April 4:
Flour crisis worsens in the NWFP.

April 5:
Violence erupts in the NWFP over flour shortage.

April 6:
People loot flour bags in Lahore.

April 7:

Flour crisis worsens in the NWFP.

April 15:
A Pakistan Air Force officer confesses to smuggling heroin in New York.

April 24:
The Naval Chief Admiral Mansoorul Haq resigns in the backdrop of corruption allegations. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had asked the Admiral to quit. This was the first time in Pakistan's history that a chief of army force had been asked to step down by the Prime Minister. The naval chief had been charged in the national press of accepting kickbacks on a submarine deal with France.

May 23:
Chief Justices' committee opposes setting up of speedy trial courts.

May 24:
The federal government announces that it will not withdraw rangers from Karachi.

May 25:
Government agrees to pay compensation to victims of extra-judicial killings in Karachi.

May 29:
The National Assembly amends the Ehtesab Law shifting the power of investigating charges of corruption from the Chief Ehtesab Commissioner to the Ehtesab Cell set up by Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif. The amendment also changed the starting date for accountability from the original 31st December 1985 to 31st December 1985 to 6 November 1990.

June 5:
Nuclear reactor near Khushab becomes operational.

June 6:
A Pakistan Air Force officer sacked, gets 10 years imprisonment for drugs smuggling.

June 8:
The special tribunal terms Mir Mutruza Bhutto's murder as extra-judicial, saying that police acted on orders from high authority.

June 16:
A writ filed in the Supreme Court for closure of Inter-Services Intelligence's political cell.

June 18:
Mir Aimal Kansi, accused of killing CIA employees in U.S., taken into custody and flown to U.S.

June 27:
Prime Minister forms a commission to probe extra-judicial killings in Karachi.

July 5:
Charges framed against Asif Zardari in Murtuza's murder case.

July 26:
MQM renames itself as Muttahida Qaumi Movement.

August 7:
Two PAF men convicted of drugs smuggling.

August 8:
Three former Air chiefs ask PM to eliminate kickbacks from defense purchases.

August 13:
National Assembly passes Anti-Terrorism Bill.

August 15:
Bar bodies condemn the anti-terrorism act.

August 20:
Punjab Chief Minister, Shahbaz Sharif, fails to convince Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah of the need of establishing special courts.

Sept 15:
Swiss government freezes bank accounts of Benazir and members of her family.

Oct 14:
DEA employee Ayaz Baloch sentenced to 10 years RI for seducing a PAF officer into drugs trafficking.

Oct. 15:
Swiss banks freeze $13.7 million in bank accounts of Benazir, Asif and Nusrat Bhutto.

Oct. 25:
The Murtaza Bhutto murder case was transferred to an anti-terrorism court, a bitter reminder that 'special' courts are merely a weapon in the hands of the ruling party.

Nov. 11:
Aimal Kansi sentenced to life imprisonment for 1993 murder of a CIA employee.

Nov. 12:
Four Americans, their driver gunned down in Karachi.

Nov. 13:
The NWFP Provincial Assembly calls for renaming the province as Pakhtunkhwa.

Nov. 14:
Aimal Kansi gets death sentence for murder of another CIA employee.

Dec. 2:
President Leghari steps down: Sentate Chairman Wasim Sajjad, takes over as acting president.

Dec. 15:
PML names Justice (retired) Rafiq arar as presidential candidate.

Dec. 16:
Nominations for presidential polls filed by 29 candidates.

Dec. 18:
Chief Election Commissioner rejects Tarar's nomination papers for his alleged remarks against the judiciary.

Dec. 19:
Lahore High Court stays CEC's order against Tarar.

Dec. 29:
Justice Abdul Qadeer Chaudhry, a retired judge of the Supreme Court, sworn-in as the Chief Election Commissioner, to replace Justice Junejo who had rejected Tarar's nomination papers.

Dec. 31:
Senator Rafiq Tarar elected president by an over whelming majority.


Sept. 1:
Government decision to reduce strength of judges challenged in the Supreme Court.

Sept. 5:
Chief Justice suspends president's order reducing the number of judges from 17 to 12.

Sept. 16:
The federal government withdraws notification curtailing SC strength.

Oct. 10:
The Acting Chief Justice, Ajmal Mian, calls a full court session to discuss the issue of number of judges in the Supreme Court.

Oct. 12:
The Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah returns from Saudi Arabia and orders cancellation of full court meeting and renewed his demand for the restoration of number of judges in the SC to 17.

Oct. 17:
Seven SC judges requisition full court meeting to discuss government-judiciary tussle over appointment of judges.

Oct. 18:
CJ Sajjad Ali Shah rejects request for convening full court.

Oct. 27:
SC rejects government's appeal for in camera hearing in ISI case,

Oct. 29:
SC suspends operation of 14th Amendment. NA adopts a resolution affirming supremacy of parliament.

Oct. 30:
SC receives contempt of court petition against PM, five others over criticism of the Chief Justice in parliament.
* SC asks president to notify elevation of five High Court judges without seeking PM's approval. Premier asks president not to act on the order for 30 days.

Oct. 31:
PM accepts CJ's demands about the appointment of judges.

Nov. 3:
SC issues notices to PM on contempt petition.

Nov. 4:
Five judges take oath after elevated to SC.

Nov. 14:
PM decides to appear in SC to face contempt charges.

Nov. 17:
PM appears in SC, denies committing contempt of court.

Nov. 18:
SC issues contempt notice to NA secretary for not submitting compete record of proceedings.

Nov. 19:
SC charge sheets PM, 11 others in contempt case.

Nov. 20:
SC asks President not to assent Contempt of Court bill.
* SC receives petitions challenging validity of 13th Amendment.

Nov. 21:
SC issues notice to govt. in 13th Amendment case.

Nov. 24:
SC issues notices in land allotment case.

Nov. 26:
SC Quetta bench holds CJ's appointment in abeyance.
* PM sends to president the name of the new Chief Justice for approval.

Nov. 27:
Five-member SC bench annuls Quetta bench's verdict over CJ's suspension.
* SC Peshawar bench endorses Quetta bench's order.
* Rowdy scenes in SC obstruct hearing in the 13th Amendment case.

Nov. 28:
Demonstrators demanding CJ's resignation storm SC building.
* CJ asks president to arrange army protection for judges.
* Justice Saiduzzaman assumes administrative control of SC and constitutes full court for hearing cases against CJ.

Nov. 29:
President blames PML for SC siege; PM rejects president's request to deploy army for judges' protection.
* CJ writes to army chief over judges' security.
* SC issues two cause lists.

Nov. 30:
PM accuses President of causing political crisis.
* CJ cancels full court orders. Ten judges ask government to ignore cancellation order.

Dec. 1:
Supreme Court Bar Association tries in vain to prevent two separate SC sittings.

Dec. 2:
Three-man bench headed by CJ suspends 13th Amendment; the other bench suspends CJ's order.
* President Leghari steps down; Senate Chairman Wasim Sajjad takes over as acting president.
* 10-member SC bench asks Justice Ajmal Mian to take over administrative control.

Dec. 3:
Justice Ajmal Mian sworn in as acting chief justice.
* SC bench issues notice to Justice Sajjad in petitions challenging his appointment.

Dec 23:
SC bench declares illegal the appointment of Sajjad Ali Shah as chief justice: Justice Ajmal Mian takes oath as CJ


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Chronology of Pakistan

Jan. 1:
Mohammad Rafiq Tarar is sworn in as President.

Jan 9:
The New York Times reports that the Bhutto family and their associates generated more than $ 1.5 billion "in illicit profits through kickbacks in virtually every sphere of government activity" -- from rice deals to sell of government land, airplanes deals with Dassault Aviation, even rake offs from government welfare schemes.
* The Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP), in a statement before the Public Accounts Committee of the National Assembly, calls for a review of the "one line budget system in vogue for defense services grant."

Jan. 12:
A five-member bench headed Chief Justice Ajmal Mian asks the government to ensure that no provision of the Contempt of Court Bill was violative of the independence of the judiciary. The bench observed: "It will be desirous that the concerned functionaries should examine the contents of the Bill in order to see whether the proposed Act contains any provision which may be violative of any provision of the Constitution or which may tend to interfere with the independence of judiciary."

Jan. 13:
Government rejects Awami National Party's demand for renaming NWFP as Pakhtoonkhwa.

Jan 17:
A statutory audit of the accounts of 627 units and formations of defense services finds irregularities to the tune of Rs 2.15 billion in the fiscal year 1993-94, according to a report of the Public Accounts Committee of the National Assembly.

Jan 22:
The Sargodha police took a special court judge, Javed Iqbal, hostage in the district jail after he convicted three police officials and magistrate of "faulty investigations" in the murder case of a former commissioner, Tajammul Abbas. When the judge asked the jail administration to handcuff the four, police personnel present in and outside the jail warned him that they would not let the judge leave the premises if anybody tried to arrest the officials. They snatched keys from the driver of the judge's car and parked official vehicles on the main gate. The siege was lifted after the four officials safely left the jail. On Jan. 28, the Lahore Court suspended the judgment of the Sargoha Special judge and released on bail the police officials and magistrate concerned.

Jan 27:
National Assembly Parliamentary Secretary for Law and Parliamentary Affairs Syed Zafar Ali Shah supports the idea that the defense expenditure should be debated in parliament so that the nation could know how the defense budget was spent.

Other major events of January:
* Khan of Qallat dies of heart attack.
* Baluchistan rejects NFC award.
* Arrest warrants against the MQM leader Altaf Hussain withdrawn.
* Jumat-ul Wida (the last Friday of Ramadan) declared an official public holiday.

Feb 4:
The federal government amends the Ehtesab Act, replacing the name, "Ehtesab Cell", with "Ehtesab Bureau", and provided powers of an SHO to the chief of Ehtesab Bureau or any other official designated by him for the purpose of investigation. The amended law provides indemnity to officials of the Ehtesab Bureau on acts deemed to have been done on "good faith". The amendments were introduced into the Ehtesab Act through a presidential ordinance, the first by President Rafiq Tarar, under clause 1 of Article 87 of the constitution.

Feb 6:
A division bench of the Sindh High Court acquitted Muttahida Qaumi Movement chief Altaf Hussain and 18 other top leaders in the Major Kaleem kidnapping case and overturned Altaf Hussain's 27-year jail sentence ordered by a special Suppression of Terrorist Activities (STA) court. The Major Kalim kidnapping case took a new turn, on Feb. 4, when a prosecution witness confessed that the name of MQM chief Altaf Hussain had been belatedly inserted in the FIR. The officer who had conducted the initial investigation into the case, told the court that Mr Hussain's name was included in the challan against him after the start of the army operation against the MQM.

Feb 7:
President Rafiq Tarar signs the Contempt of Court (Amendment) bill. The Bill was pending for assent since Nov 20, 1997, when a three-member bench headed by the then chief justice Sajjad Ali Shah had directed the president not to assent it. The contempt law provides right of appeal to a person convicted under the contempt law under the Supreme Court's original jurisdiction, and mere filing of an appeal against the conviction will mean automatic stay. The law was passed by parliament when the Supreme Court headed by Justice Sajjad Ali Shah had initiated contempt of court proceedings against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, and seven other legislators.

Feb 9:
The Lahore High Court accepts the constitutional petition filed by Rafiq Tarar against his disqualification by the (former) Acting CEC and declared him qualified to contest for and hold the office of President. The acting CEC, Justice Mukhtar Ahmed Junejo of the Supreme Court, had found Mr. Tarar, a former Supreme Court Judge, guilty of propagating views prejudicial to the integrity and independence of the judiciary at the time of his nomination as a presidential candidate under Article 63(G) of the Constitution and debarred him from the December, 1997 contest.

Feb 25:
* ANP quits government as talks fail.
* Squardan Leader Farooq Ahmed Khan of the PAF, who was arrested last year in a sting operation selling drugs to FBI agents, is sentenced by a Manhattan Federal Court in New York for one year and one day. Sqr.Ldr Farooq was arrested in Manhattan on April 9, 1997 after he brought two kilograms of heroin from Pakistan on a PAF cargo plane which came to pick up the arms released by the US under the Brown Amendment.

Other major events of February:
* Lahore-Islamabad motorway leased out to a UK firm for 25 years.
* Bill banning student involvement in politics passed.

March 2:
Census begins after 17 years under army supervision.
* Lahore High Court dismissed a writ petition seeking a direction against the government for settling along the motorway the Pakistanis residing in the refugee camps in Bangladesh. Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramaday also prescribed a cost of Rs. 5,000 to petitioner Advocate M.D. Tahir for indulging in frivolous litigation. The court said what was the guarantee that agents of the Indian intelligence agency RAW had not entered the ranks of these people. It also said that it required a lot of money for settling these people in Pakistan when there was already a lot of poverty here.

March 18:
Two civil judges were manhandled by the Vehari (Punjab) police when they visited the police station to check irregularities and misuse of powers. There had been reports of the illegal detention of some people at the police station and the judges asked for the reasons for their detention and wanted to examine the daily register. The SHO responded by resorting to violence.

March 19:
The Supreme Court dismissed as "frivolous" a constitutional petition challenging the 13th Amendment and ordered the petitioner to pay Rs. 10,000 as court expenses. The 13th Amendment had stripped the president of the power to dissolve the National Assembly and dismiss a government.

April 6:
Pakistan pardons a local employee of the US Drug Enforcement Agency, Ayaz Baloch, who had been sentenced to 10 years' hard labor for persuading Sq. Ldr. Farood to carry drugs to the United States.

April 12:
About 1.5 million people are addicted to heroin in Pakistan and most of them belong to middle class society, according to a report of the UN Drug Control Program. These addicts are between 20 and 30 years of age and their number is constantly rising in the country.

April 30:
Jaranwala Police registers a case under Hudood Ordinance against an eight year old child who was sent to Faisalabad District jail.

Other major events for April:
* Ghauri missile tested: US condemns the test.
* LHC rules that Ehtesab Commissioner has unlimited powers.
* Sindh Chief Minister Liaqat Jatoi says all cases against the MQM legislators withdrawn.

May 6:
The bishop of Faisalabad, Dr. John Joseph, commits suicide in protest for awarding death sentence to a Christian under the Blasphemy Law.

May 15:
The Supreme Court declares 12 provisions of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) as invalid, and brought special courts on par with ordinary courts working within the existing judicial system. The court ruled that the power to law enforcement agencies to open fire on suspicion of terrorism and accepting a confession before a DSP as valid piece of evidence, were untenable and needed to be suitable amended.

May 18:
The Supreme Court, in a majority (6-1)decision, upheld the 14th Constitutional Amendment that bars members of parliament to vote against their party's line or abstained from voting. The court held that Article 63(a) would bring stability in the polity of the country as it would be instrumental in eradicating floor crossing. However, the court ruled that an elected member should not be disqualified if he opposed the party's policies in public. In his dissident judgment, Justice Abdul Mamoon Kazi held that Article 63(a) was violative of fundamental rights and thus was not enforceable.

May 28:
Pakistan conducts five nuclear tests at Chagai, Balochistan in response to Indian nuclear tests.
* President promulgates emergency under Article 232.
* Freeze imposed on withdrawal of foreign currency accounts (FCAs).

May 30:
Pakistan tests sixth nuclear device.

Other major events of May:
* US blacklists Qadeer Khan's Kahuta laboratories.
* Japan imposes economic sanctions on Pakistan for conducting nuclear tests.
* PIA Fokker hijacked near Gwadar.

June 10:
A resolution ratifying the president's proclamation of emergency was passed by the joint sitting of parliament with 166 votes in favor and 50 against it.

June 24:
A Swiss investigating judge rejects an appeal seeking review of the June 2 indictment orders passed against three Swiss nationals involved in money laundering allegedly on behalf of Ms Benazir Bhutto and her husband Asif Ali Zardari. Admitting that Pakistan was a "damaged party", Judge Danial Devaud ruled that the offences these people were charged with could have inherently caused considerable financial loss to the state of Pakistan. The government of Pakistan had made a request to the Swiss government that Ms Benazir Bhutto and her husband Asif Zardari had received huge amounts in kickbacks and commissions in several cases including ARY Gold, submarines deals, Cotecna, SGS, Awami Tractor scheme, rice exports and textile quota management.

Other major events of June:
* Nawaz Sharif announces a "national agenda" for construction of Kalabagh Dam.
* PM defers Kalabagh Dam construction after opposition from three provinces.
* Islamabad declares moratorium on nuclear tests and asks New Delhi to sign accord for outlawing such tests.
* US announces sanctions against Pakistan and India.

July 8:
Government announces the census results. According to the census figures, Pakistan's population rose to 130.5 million from 64.2 million, as recorded in 1981.

July 9:
Sindh nationalist groups reject the census results.

July 28:
A seven-member bench of the Supreme Court unanimously upholds the imposition of emergency on May 28. However, it set aside the fundamental rights' suspension order of the same date.

Other major events for July:
* Two Ehtesab references against PM dropped.
* Alam Channa dies in New York.

Aug. 4:
Education budget slashed in austerity measures.

Aug. 14:
The MQM quits the federal government in protest against the on-going killings in Karachi.
* Ex-President Farooq Ahmad Khan Leghari launches Millat Party.

Aug. 20:
Pakistan receives the news of US attack on Afghanistan with shock as the US missiles fly over the Pakistani territory.

Aug 28:
The 15th Amendment Bill proposed. The amendment is passed by the NA body concerned.

Other major events for August:
* Six bodies of Pakistanis dead in US strikes on Afghanistan arrive in Miran Shah.
* Pakistan complains to the UN against US violation of its air space.

Sept. 6:
Borrowers of 19 financial institutions were given the benefit of loans write off amounting to Rs. 4.64 billion from Jan. to Sept. 1997, according a State Bank report.

Sept 15:
The National Assembly rejects by voice vote a resolution moved by ANP's Wali Mohammad Khan, urging the government to take steps to check adulteration and fraudulent measurement of patrol at filling stations. During the debate, the parliamentary secretary for petroleum opposed the resolution.

Sept. 24:
The National assembly passed Foreign Exchange Temporary Restriction Bill 1998 to provide legal cover to the freezing of the foreign currency accounts following nuclear detonation. The Senate was by-passed as the bill was treated as a money bill. The bill was passed in the absence of the PPP members who walked out in protest.

Sept. 27:
The British newspaper, Observer, says PM Nawaz Sharif has siphoned off millions.

Sept. 28:
Government denies the Observer report and lodges complaint with Britain's Press watchdog over the report.

Sept. 27:
Police registers a murder case against the officers of rangers in connection with the killing of two Shiite activists in Karachi. Two minority Shiite youths were killed when paramilitary rangers opened fire during the funeral of a slain local Shiite leader and his son when an unruly mob attacked the law enforcement personnel.

Other major events for September:
* Nawaz Sharif seeks help to counter opposition to CA-15 bill.
* Opposition parties boycott CTBT debate in parliament.

Oct. 2:
Nationalists from Sindh, the NWFP, Balochistan and the Seraiki belt of Punjab, formed an alliance, named Pakistan's Oppressed Nations Movement (PONAM) to wage a struggle to attain provincial autonomy. The movement issued an eight-point agenda, known as Islamabad declaration, calling for re-naming the country as Multinational Federal Republic of Pakistan. It also asks for carving out a fifth province of "Saraikistan", declaring all provincial languages as national languages.

Oct. 5:
In a speech at the Navy War College in Lahore, the Army Chief of Staff, General Jahangir Karamat, said that Pakistan could not afford political unrest or "the destabilizing effect of polarization, vendettas and insecurity-driven expedient policies. He said that the political mandate needed to be translated into institutional strength or else "we would have a permanent election campaign environment in the country" He proposed setting up of a National Security Council to act as an empire over and supreme arbiter of the nation's affairs.

Oct. 6:
General Karamat's proposal about formation of National security Council to institutionalize decision making evokes mixed reactions from political leaders. Some politicians have termed it a supra-constitutional measure which will mar the democratic process while others termed it a positive development to overcome the situation created due to the failure of political leadership, leading the country economically and politically isolated.

Oct. 7:
General Karamat was summoned by Nawaz Sharif to account for his public and scathing attack on the government. After the meeting, General Jehangir Karamat resigns. Lt. Gen. Pervez Musharraf is appointed the new chief of army staff. General Musharraf superceding two Lt. Generals, Ali Quli Khan, the Chief of General Staff and Khalid Nawaz Quarter Master General of the army. Lt. Gen. Nawaz resigned immediately after Gen. Musharraf was appointed the new army chief.

Oct. 9:
The National Assembly passes CA-15 bill.

Oct. 10:
Pakistan ranked fifth in the list of countries notorious for kidnappings for ransom, according to the London newspaper, The Independent. The report said that the annual pay-outs on this count amounts to more than $10 million in direct contravention of government's policy which is against paying any ransom to the kidnappers. The average ransom paid in Pakistan is around $50,000 (Rs. 3 million).

Oct. 12:
The Chief of General Staff, Lt. Gen. Ali Quli Khan submitted his resignation after having been superseded by Lt. Gen. Pervez Musharraf who was appointed new Chief of Army Staff.

Oct. 17:
Hakim Saeed, his associate shot dead in Karachi.

Oct. 27:
The government repealed the Contempt of Court Act 1976 and promulgated an ordinance, widening the scope of fair comment on the judgements of court. The new law has empowered the courts to prohibit the publication of any proceedings through a written order. It has also allowed the publication of substantially accurate account of what has transpired in a court. Personalized criticism of judge or judges will constitute judicial contempt.

Oct. 28:
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif accused an MPA and seven other activists of his coalition partners, MQM, of being involved in the murder of Hakeem Saeed, and gave them three days to hand over the accused, failing which there would be a parting of ways. He told a news conference in Karachi, that he had "credible and incontrovertible evidence based on the statements of Aamirullah and others.

Oct. 29:
The MQM, alleging that prime minister was a central character in the conspiracy to kill Hakeem Mohammad Saeed, announced that they had decided to scrap their alliance with the PML and quit the government. MQM Chief Altaf Hussain asks his workers to immediately go into hiding to save their lives as the government had launched another clean-up operation against his party.

Oct. 30:
The federal government imposes governor's rule in Sindh under emergency provisions of article 232 ( c ) of clause (2) of the constitution. Provincial cabinet was also disbanded but the Sindh Assembly was not dissolved.

Other major event for October:
* An NWFP minister disqualified for floor crossing.

Nov. 4:
The Advocate General, M. Iqbal Raad, told the Sindh High Court that Sheikh Mohammad Aamirullah, accused in the murder of Hakeem Mohammad Saeed, has snot so far given his confessional statement which is required to be given before a magistrate under Section 164 CrPC. He added that the accused has only confessed to having had a part in the murder before the police and notables. Qazi Khalid, a former minister, submitted that there were contradictory versions of Aamirullah's "confessional statement" given by the prime minister and the advocate general. He said the prime minister had been on record as having told a countrywide audience that Aamirullah had confessed to murdering Hakeem Saeed. He then observed that the prime minister has misled the nation on the television network by claiming that Aamirullah had confessed to the whole thing, thus maligning the MQM in the eyes of the public throughout the country through print and electronic media.
* Britain rejected a request from Pakistan government for the arrest and extradition of former additional director general of Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), Rehman Malik, who was living in self-imposed exile in London. Malik had upset Pakistan government when he released "documentary evidence" of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his family's corruption in banking frauds to a British newspaper as well as disclosed the details about Nawaz Sharif's properties in London.

Nov. 5:
Karachi police detains two teenaged boys for being in possession of a toy pistol. The release of these two teenagers came only after the area Sub Divisional Magistrate threatened to raid the police station to find out for himself how much lethal was the "weapon" seized from the boys.

Nov. 10:
Jamhoori Watan Party Senator M. Zafar introduces in the Senate the 16th Constitutional Amendment Bill envisaging maximum provincial autonomy as provided in the 1973 constitution. It seeks amendment in at least 45 articles of the constitution.

Nov. 16:
A session of the Sindh Assembly, summoned by MPAs belonging to the Pakistan's People Party and the MQM could not take place as the local administration had taken the unprecedented measure of sealing off the assembly premises and blocking all approaches with water tankers, armored personnel carriers and barbed wires.

Nov. 20:
The government gives sweeping powers to the armed forces to arrest, interrogate and summarily try terrorists in Sindh, by invoking Article 245 of the constitution.

Nov. 20:
Muttahida Qaumi Movement MPAs Shoaib Bokhar and Wakil Jamali arrested with three party activists in a raid on the MPA's Hostel in Azizabad.

Nov. 23:
The Supreme Court declines to take notice of the imposition of governor's rule on Sindh and observed that the federal government had the powers to impose governor's rule under Article 232 of the Constitution. "Restoration of peace in Karachi is of paramount importance and court cannot declare it (governor's rule) illegal as some individual or a party wants to do so," observed Chief Justice Ajmal Mian.

Nov. 26:
The federal government notifies that armed forces will have the power to conduct investigation of "appropriate cases" of terrorism. By virtue of the amendment to the Pakistan Armed Forces (Acting in Aid of Civil Power) Ordinance, the armed forces have now been empowered to investigate and collect evidence through their own intelligence agencies as per the Army Act.
* Pakistan climbs to the 14 th position from the bottom on the list of world's most corrupt nations for 1998, released by Transparency International. After attaining the 2nd spot during Benazir Bhutto's government, Pakistan was overtaken in the last years by 12 countries including, Cameroon, Paraguary, Honduras, Tanzania, Indonesia, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Russia, Vietnam, Kenya, Uganda and Nigeria.

Nov. 26:
The residence of Idrees Bakhtiar, a senior staff reporter of Herald monthly and BBC correspondent was raided by CIA police. The police harassed the family and also arrested his 28-year old son, Moonis, who was later released.

Nov. 27:
The Chief Justice of the Balochistan High Court, Justice Amir-ul Mulk Mengal, was stopped at the Frontier Corps check-post at Bushki. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif ordered transfer of the FC check-post in-charge, Captain Butt.

Nov. 28:
Mubashir Ali, who was suspected by police for arranging the travel abroad of two of the suspects in Hakeem Saeed case, died in police custody.

Other major events for November:
* List of 580 MQM men given to police.
* Two MQM MPAs held.

Dec. 13:
A man condemned to death for murder by an 'Islamic Court' in Orakzai Agency was publicly executed by his brother and uncle.

Dec. 22:
The extra-judicial killing of alleged outlaws in Punjab continued throughout 1998 -- on average, one person being killed every fourth day. A total of 88 people died in 55 'encounters,' according to press reports.

Dec. 25:
Some 78 people were killed and over 80 injured in 36 incidents of sectarian violence in the Punjab in 1998.

Dec. 31:
Over 650 people were killed in political and sectarian violence during 1998 in Sindh (mainly in Karachi) , according to press reports.
* The national assembly is informed that the nationalized banks have recovered a little over Rs. 17 billion from their debtors during 1998, whereas Rs. 91 billion is still outstanding against the defaulters.
* A military court convict, Ashraf Chakar Irani was executed in Karachi Central Prison after amendments were made by the governor of Sindh in the Pakistan Prisons Rules, allowing the prison authorities to carry out an execution during Ramadan. Ashraf Chakar was convicted and sentenced to death by a military court in Karachi on Dec. 17.

Other major events for December:
* Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and US President Bill Clinton hold summit in Washington.
* US tells Pakistan to take concrete steps on CTBT, FMCT and Osama bin Laden for removal of sanctions.
* Three summary military courts start functioning in Karachi.
* Law enforcement agencies carry out operation in Liaquatabad and Gharibabad: six cops, a ranger sustain injuries in exchange of fire with unidentified gunmen.
* FIA raids Rawalpindi offices of dailies Jung and The News.
* Military Court in Karachi sentences two youths to death in separate cases of gang-rape and killing of a policemen.
* Three armed forces men found dead in a car in Karachi.

Jan. 3:
Three people were killed and two policemen injured when a powerful bomb planted underneath a bridge on Raiwind Road exploded.

Jan 16:
The NWFP government promulgated Islamic laws in the Malakand Division and Kohistan districts of Hazara Division.

Jan 13:
The National Assembly amid protests and walkout by the combined opposition and independent members adopts a motion for convening a joint sitting of parliament to pass eight outstanding bills. These bills had been passed by the National Assembly but not yet by the Senate.

Jan. 27:
Lahore High Court declares void Section 2 of the Foreign Exchange (Temporary Restriction) Act, 1998, freezing foreign currency accounts and ordered their immediate restoration.

Jan. 28:
The Additional District and Sessions Judge Hyderabad acquitted six persons in a case of keeping 349 peasants in illegal confinement. The peasants, including women and children, had been freed in a raid on, what had been described as a 'private jail' of Raees Ghulam Hussain Khokhar (a feudal lord) in November 1992. The raid was conducted jointly by police and army in a locality of Chambar town. The peasants had claimed that some of the female victims were subjected to gang rape by certain henchmen of the feudal lord during the captivity. The judge observed that the peasants lacked sufficient evidences to prove the allegations leveled against the accused.

Jan 25:
The Federal Shariat Court questions the validity of several provisions of the Muslim Family Laws Ordinance, 1961, relating to inheritance by orphaned grandsons, registration of marriage, divorce notice, effectiveness of divorce after 90 days and procedural curbs on bigamy and polygamy.

Jan 28:
Sedition cases are registered against three Urdu dailies of Karachi, Jang, Aman and Parcham, for publishing an advertisement of Muttahida's Khidmat-e-Khalq Foundation on January 1, which according to the police, was aimed at inciting people against the state.

Jan. 30:
The federal government amended the Pakistan Armed Forces (Acting in Aid of the Civil Power) Ordinance, 1998, providing that military courts can be established in the whole of Pakistan.
* Three activists of the Lashkar-I-Jhangvi allegedly involved in the Raiwind bomb blast were shot dead in police custody.

Feb 7:
The federal government suspends work on issuing an ordinance to amend the present procedure of treating the government officials nominated for involvement in corrupt practices, and for their speedy trial resulting in the confiscation of the unlawfully acquired property and arrest/sentence of those found guilty.

Feb. 9:
Former Punjab Chief Minister Manzoor Ahmed Watto was arrested by the anti-corruption establishment from the Lahore High Court premises on a charge of misappropriation of Baitul Maal funds shortly after he was allowed bail by the court in another case.

Feb. 11:
Six military courts were set up in Lahore division to try cases of power thefts.

Feb. 13:
Three persons, including Senator Abul Hayee Baloch and a lady worker from Lahore, were injured when the police baton-charged, used water cannons and threw bricks on a peaceful procession of the Pakistan Awami Ittehad in front of the parliament house. The marched, organized by the PAI for the freedom of the press, was led by PAI president Nawabzada Nasrullah Khan, opposition leader Benazir Bhutto and secretary general of the alliance Hamid Nasir Chatta, besides a number of sitting and former PPP MNAs and senators.

Feb. 17:
A nine-member bench of the Supreme Court unanimously declared the setting up of military courts for trial of civilians in Karachi as unconstitutional. However, the court clarified that its decision would not affect the sentences and punishment awarded and executed by the military courts as the cases would be treated as past and closed transactions. Two people convicted by the Military Courts were executed.

Feb. 19:
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, in a televised speech, said the government would respect the Supreme Court decision of setting aside the military courts as it was binding on him under constitution. However, he indirectly accused the judiciary for delay in the dispensation of justice to the common man. "Delay in justice had emboldened the terrorists to the extent that they had killed a personality like Hakeem Saeed," he pointed out.

Feb 26:
The annual state Department Human Rights report for 1998 criticizes the government in Pakistan for its human rights record, specifically its moves to restrict the freedom of the press, using accountability for political purposes and condoning police brutalities.

March 1:
The Supreme Court indicts seven persons including six ruling party legislators on the charges of contempt of court for storming the court building on November 28, 1997. The court however, withdrew show cause notices issued to the executive and police officers of Islamabad.

March 8:
Two handcuffed MQM activists were shot dead in an alleged police-terrorists encounter in Liaquatabad, Karachi.

March 9:
19 years after the Zakat and Ushr Ordinance was promulgated by General Ziaul Haq and nine years after the Sindh High Court had struck down its Zakat provisions as manifestly discriminatory, the Supreme Court upheld that landmark judgement and rejected the appeal of the federal government. The Supreme Court ruled that members of all "Fiqahs" were entitled to exemption from Zakat deduction from their holdings, and the government had no power to reject the declaration on the ground that he/she did not belong to Fiqah-I-Jafria.
* The Sindh government concedes that at least two incidents of extra-judicial killings had taken place in Karachi since the imposition of governor's rule.

March 15:
The National Assembly is told that different federal and provincial government departments owe almost Rs. 29 billion to Wapda, with army topping the list of defaulters with Rs. 3.4 billion.
* Pakistan owed a total of $26.9 billion as of December 1998 in external debts, according to a joint report of the IMF, the World Bank, OECD and Bank for International Settlements.

March 18:
The federal government tells the National Assembly that the MQM had been patronizing terrorism in Karachi during its 20 months ruling alliance with the Pakistan Muslim League.

March 19:
The London High Court orders Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, his brother Abbas Sharif and father Mian Mohammad Sharif to jointly pay a sum of $32.5 million to Al Towfeek Company for Funds Ltd., the investment Company from which they had taken a loan for Hudabiya Paper Mills Ltd. The Queen's Division Bench of the London High Court passed the ex-parte order , as the defendants had not defended themselves in the court.

April 2:
The owner of the Frontier Post, Rehmat Shah, was arrested in Lahore by the army-run Anti-narcotics Force on charge of possessing 20 Kgs of charas and three guns.

April 10:
Syeda Abida Hussain, Minister for Population Welfare and Science and Technology, resigns, while Sikandar Hayat, a retired major general and chairman of the PM's monitoring and implementation cell, was sacked for alleged involvement of corruption practices. General Hayat was the architect of the Khidmat Committees.

April 13: Tanzeem-I-Islam chief Dr. Israr Ahmad resigns from the chairmanship of the Ulema Committee set up by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to restore sectarian peace to the country. His resignation came in the wake of a rift in the committee after its meetings on April 7 and 8. The 10-member committee suggested two bills to combat sectarian violence. On of the proposed laws envisaged severe punishment to any person or sect which publishes or propagates anything against the Khulfai Rshideen and Ahle Bait.

April 14: Pakistan successfully test-fired a 2,000 km range ballistic missile, Gauri-II to match India's testing of Agni-II.

April 15: An Ehtesab Bench of Lahore High Court convicts Benazir Bhutto and Asif Ali Zardari on corruption charges and sentences them to undergo five years' imprisonment each, and to pay a fine of $8.6 million. The court also ordered their disqualification as members of parliament, as well as confiscation of their property.
* Pakistan successfully conducts a flight test of its Hatef-IV (Shaheen) ballistic missile, employing a solid fuel motor, with a range of 600 kms. The missile was fired from Sonmiani base near Karachi and covered a distance of 750 kms before striking its target in Baluchistan.

April 19:
The outgoing chief Justice of the High Court of Sindh and judge-designate of the Supreme Court told a full court reference held in his honor, that confidence of the people in the judiciary had been shaken. He said it was a matter of concern that with the continuing degeneration of the moral fabric of society, the malady of corruption had afflicted the power judiciary too, which had been made the task of dispensation of justice all the more difficult and "has shake the confidence of the people in the courts."

April 23:
The government places before the Senate names of 49 parliamentarians, majority of them belonging to the ruling PML, against whom Wapda had lodged cases of electricity pilferage and defaults. The list of MNAs and Senators and MPAs included the names of Interior Minister Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain, Deputy Speaker National Assembly Chaudhry Jaffar Iqbal and Syeda Abida Hussain.

April 25:
Chief Ehtesabe Commissioner Justice Ghulam Mujaddi Mirza dropped three references against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as they have either no substance and merit or they don't pertain to the period with which the Ehtesab Act deals. In a fourth reference the CEC excluded the prime minister as respondent but referred the matter for inquiry and investigation to the Ehtesab Bureau. The other respondent in the case was NWFP Chief Minister Mehtab Ahmed Khan Abbasi.

April 28:
The President promulgates an ordinance on making it possible for the Anti-Terrorist courts to function in the light of the Supreme Court decision on military courts. The ordinance called as (Anti-Terrorism (Amendment) Ordinance 1999, was promulgated on the official holiday of Ashura (10th of Moharram).

April 30:
Karachi is treated separately from the rest of the province in matters of jurisdiction for hearing civil suits. In Karachi, senior civil judges are barred from hearing suits valuing more than Rs. 500,000. Civil suits valuing more than half a million rupees can only be filed in the High Court and not before the senior civil judges.
* The ANP rejects government move that the NWFP should be renamed Afghania. ANP Provincial Chief, Nasim Wali Khan warned that if NWFP was named Afghania, it would provide a better chance for Afghan displaced persons to declare it as their territory as the province situated right on the Afghan border and 1.6 million Afghan refugees were already living here.

May 1:
The government amends the schedule of the Anti Terrorism Act, expanding its application to the 'unnatural' offences committed with a child under the age of 12 years.

May 2:
The Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry reveals that only 17 influential families/groups account for 40 per cent of the defaulted loans.

May 4:
Hussain Haqqani, Chairman of Urban democratic Front, is arrested. He is later handed over to the Federal Investigating Agency. A hasty decision by the Ehtesab Bureau in the detention of Hussain Haqqani, had caused some serious concern among the FIA circles to justify his arrest. All was done in such a hurry that even the complaints against Haqqani from the relevant government agencies were sought after his arrest. He was produced before a court for remand in a year old case in which his name was never mentioned before.

May 6:
The government move to let the ordinance on punishment for electricity theft lapse evokes widespread condemnation by political parties. Some political leaders said the government's decision clearly shows that it wants to protect the big thieves of electricity who belong to the Muslim League. At least 49 PML legislators were reportedly among the major defaulters.
* The Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) decides to submit a reference to the president to direct the Supreme Judicial Council for removal of a Sindh High Court judge for passing remarks against a Quranic law of inheritance. In an inheritance dispute case, Justice Shaiq Usmani remarked that law of inheritance as pronounced in verses No. 11-14 of Al Nisa was mutable and liable to amendment. According to the judge, the reason behind the concept of immutability of these laws was only male chauvinistic attitudes.

May 8:
Several dozen officials of ISI stormed into the house of Najam Sethi, Editor of The Friday Times, Lahore and dragged him out of his room. Before leaving the house with Mr. Sethi, they tied his wife Jugnoo's hands with a rope and locked her up in a dressing room. Later the federal government confirming the arrest said that Mr. Sethi had been taken into custody for interrogation by ISI for his alleged connection with he Indian intelligence agency, RAW (Research and Analysis Wing).

May 9:
The Punjab government dissolves 1,941 of the total 5,967 non-government organizations (NGOs) registered with the social welfare department, frozen their bank accounts and seized their assets and records because of their alleged involvement in corrupt practices and undesirable activities, misuse of funds, blackmailing and working against their charity.

May 11:
The Council of Islamic Ideology declares lucrative prize schemes launched by major nationalized and private banks as un-Islamic and said these schemes fell into the category of Riba and gambling. The CII informed the Ministry of Finance that the Crorepati Scheme of the Habib Bank and the Maala Maal Price Scheme of the Muslim Commercial Bank were un-Islamic and instigated the people to become millionaires overnight.

May 14:
The Supreme Court acquitted all ruling party legislators who were indicted on the charges of contempt of court for attacking the court building when proceedings against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif were underway in 1997. The three-member bench, which decided the case, observed that though flagrant contempt of court was committed but showed its inability to convict the accused as the people had not given specific evidence against them.

May 15:
Lahore Bar Council leaders expressed their disappointment at the outcome of the contempt of Court case against the ruling party legislatures. They said that the contemners have admitted their guilt in their apologies. A conviction could have been based on their admission and the video film of the Supreme Court's own cameras. They said the SC verdict sets back the process of restoration of public confidence in the superior judiciary set in by the apex court judgements on emergency and military courts.
* A 14 year boy, Moahmmad Saleem, who was sentenced to death by a military court and later acquitted by the military appellate court for being minor was re-arrested by police to be tried in the newly established anti-terrorism court under the same FIR.

May 16:
The Chief Ehtesab Commissioner, Justice Ghulam Mujaddad Mirza rejected two identical complaint made jointly against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Ehtesab Bureau Chairman Senator Saifur Rehman on charges of causing the exchequer a loss of Rs. 13.697 million by evading duties and taxes in import of BMW cars. It was alleged that the Estesab Bureau Chairman Senator Seifur Rehman (whose company, REDCO Pakistan Ltd is the sole agents for BMW cars in Pakistan), in connivance with the-then prime minister Mian Nawaz Sharif had imported 25 BMW cars in September 1992 at a lower value in a bid to evade customs duty amounting to Rs. 1.369 million.

May 17:
The Social Welfare Department of Sindh cancels the registration of 273 non-governmental organizations (NGOs) for violating government rules. The Social Welfare Secretary, Abdul Waheed Pirzada said that the action was initiated against those NGOs which were involved in anti-state activities and corruption.

May 18:
Senator Asif Zardari suffers serious injuries in CIA custody. Police said that Zardari tried to commit suicide but Zardari himself said that interrogators had tortured him to extract from him confessional statements, implicating his wife, Benazir Bhutto in various cases. At the order of the Sindh High Court, Zardari was shifted to Agha Khan Hospital, next day, with blood oozing from his lacerated tongue.

May 19:
The Supreme Court reserves judgment on the petition of Air Marshal (retired) Asghar Khan regarding the distribution of funds by ISI among the political parties in 1990 elections. The case had originated from the letter of Asghar Khan which he had sent to the then Chief Justice Sajjad Ali Shah for appropriate action after reading the statements of General Naseerullah Khan Baber. Gen. Baber had informed the National Assembly that ISI had collected Rs. 140 million from Habib Bank which were distributed among different politicians before 1990 elections. Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif is one of those politicians who received money from ISI in 1990 polls. However, the Supreme Court observed that it would confine itself to laying guidelines for the operation of the political cell of the ISI within the legal framework. About the distribution of the funds by the ISI, Justice Saiduzzaman Siddiqui, head of a three-judge bench, observed that it was "history" and the court was not concerned with it.

May 20:
Cyclone hits southern areas of Pakistan causing heavy casualties and material damage. More than 200 people were dead and hundreds of fishing boats were missing. In Thatta, 300,000 people were affected whereas in Badin 400,000 were displaced. At least 152,000 acres of farmland was damaged in Keti Bander and Shah Bandar alone.

May 26:
Indian fighter jets and helicopter gun-ships launch operation against the Mujahideen in Kargil. Pakistan calls the air strikes a "very very serious" provocation because the armies of both nations normally limit their hostilities to regular cross-border exchanges of artillery and small-arms fire.

May 27:
Pakistan shot down two Indian fighter planes as they intruded into the Line of Control in Kashmir. One of the pilot, Squardon Leader Ajay Ahuja was killed while the other pilot, Flight Lt. K. Nachiketa is captured alive. The Indian planes were involved in operation against the militants in Kargil area. The wreckage of Nachiketa's MiG-27 plane was found 12 kms inside Pakistan.
* Army formally takes over management of the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation and banned trade union activities in the organization for two years.

May 28:
Pakistan marked the first anniversary of nuclear tests. The government has named May 28 as "Youm-e-Takbeer." Speaking on this occasion, Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan's nuclear tests gave the nation a new confidence to counter any enemy attack on equal basis. However, opposition factions of Balochistan decided to observe this day as a "black day" to highlight plight of the country's least developed province. Nationalist parties and students organization organized protest rallies. The nationalist leaders criticized the rulers for conducting the nuclear tests and said a poor country like Pakistan did not deserve to conduct such blasts. Police in Quetta reported that they had found and defused a bomb near the residence of Balochistan Governor.
* The Supreme Court directs the Federal government to take administrative and legislative steps for the enforcement of fundamental rights in the Northern Areas. The Court ruled that the people there should be allowed to be governed by their elected representatives within a period of six months.

June 1:
The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, a press freedom organization, says that it is conducting an investigation into a "hit list" prepared by the Pakistan government that contains 35 prominent journalists of Pakistan. According to reports received by the CPJ, the federal government had decided to establish a special media cell comprising officials from the police, Intelligence Bureau and the Federal Investigation Agency to punish the journalists who have been writing against the government. Ehtesab Bureau Chairman, Senator Saifur Rehman Khan would head this cell which would function simultaneously at Lahore, Islamabad, Karachi and Peshawar with its head office in Islamabad.
* Anti Terrorism Court in Lahore sentenced to death two activists of Lashkar-e-Jhangwi Sunni group accused of killing 25 Shiites. Mohammad Aziz Gujjar and Haroon Rashid were found guilty of opening fire on a Shiite gathering at Mominpura graveyard in Lahore in January 1997. The indiscriminate firing left 22 people dead on the spot while three others died later in hospital.

June 2:
Editor of Friday Times Najam Sethi is released after three weeks when the government cancelled the FIR and withdrew charges of treason against him.

June 3:
Senate approves by over two-thirds majority, the Constitution (16th Amendment) bill providing for quota for all regions and areas for 40 years. The bill was opposed by only one MQM Senator Aftab Sheikh at all stages of the consideration and passing the bill. Both Senators Aftab Sheikh and Jamiluddin Aali staged walk out from the House to register their protest on what they called the killing of principle of merit.
* Pakistan freed the captured Indian fighter pilot, Flight Lt. K. Nachiketa. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had ordered his release as a gesture of goodwill to ease border tensions with Indian in the disputed Kashmir region.

June 8:
The Lahore High Court released on bail a person accused in a blasphemy case. Sheikh Muhammad Yousaf Ali was arrested in March 1997 but never produced in any court for trial. It was alleged that the petitioner claimed himself to be a prophet. However, the petitioner filed an affidavit in the high court that he believed in the oneness of God and the finality of the prophet-hood of the Holy prophet (PUH). He also said that any person claiming to be a prophet was an imposter.

June 12:
Pakistan's Foreign Minister Sartaj Aziz visits New Delhi and holds talks with his Indian counterpart, Jaswant Singh. The talks ended in a deadlock as India refused to discuss the Kashimir issue and insisted on withdrawal of what it called Pakistani infiltrators from Kargil.

June 14:
The Supreme Court reopened the rowdy-ism case and issued fresh notices to the Pakistan Muslim League, Attorney General and seven alleged contemners who were first indicted and later acquitted by a bench of the apex court. A five-member bench of the Supreme Court, headed by outgoing Chief Justice, Ajmal Mian, converted a criminal original petition filed by Shahid Orakzai, a journalist, into an appeal against the decision of the three-member bench of the SC.

June 15:
President Clinton asked Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to withdraw Pakistani troops from the Indian part of Kashmir, in a telephone conversation between the two leaders. Clinton called the prime minister as part of his continued efforts to reduce tensions and prevent the situation from escalating into a full fledged conflict between the two countries. On June 14, Clinton telephoned the Indian Prime Minister Vajpayee and praised him for the restraint shown by him in the current tense situation.

June 16:
The Stockholm-based International Peace Institute (SIPRI) says: "The risk of nuclear proliferation by Pakistan and India in Kashmir is increasingly significant. The greatest risk of nuclear war in South Asia arises from Pakistan's long-standing strategy of using the threat of early first use of nuclear weapons to deter conventional war."

June 17:
The federal appoints Mamnoon Hussain, President of Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, is appointed new Governor of Sindh to replace Lt. General Moinuddin Haider. Education Minister, Syed Ghous Ali Shah was also appointed adviser to the prime minister on Sindh affairs with powers of the chief minister. Syed Ghous Ali Shah has been asked to muster support of the disgruntled elements in the PPP and independent MPAs in the Sindh Assembly in order to setup a Muslim League government in the Sindh. The PML has only 15 MPAs in the 100-member provincial assembly.

June 18:
The Supreme Court accepted the government's plea that the country is not in a position now to honor its legal obligation of allowing free operation of FCAs. The Court held that Section 2 of the Foreign Exchange (Temporary Restriction) Act, 1998 was lawful of the constitution, subject to the declaration that the same did not confer any power on the federation or the State Bank to compel FCA holders to convert their foreign exchange holdings into Pakistani rupees at the officially notified rate of exchange, or to compel the said account holders to liquidate their FCA accounts in Pakistani rupees which foreign exchange holdings had been accepted by the respective banks as security against any loan or other facilities extended to them. The court expressed its concern on the improper utilization of foreign exchange deposits of the FCA holders by the successive government in breach of the solemn commitment given by the legislature.

June 20:
Leaders of the Group of Eight industrial nations, in Cologne, Germany, call on Pakistan and India to end hostilities immediately and resume talks. In a statement, the G8 leaders, including US President Bill Clinton and Russian leader Boris Yeltsin, voiced "deep concern" over the continuing military confrontation in Kashmir, repeating their earlier charge that the fighting was the result of "the infiltration of armed intruders which violated the Line of Control."

June 23:
The federal government suspended five articles ( 120, 122, 123, 124 and 125) of the constitution pertaining to the presentation of a provincial budget so that the Sindh Province budget could be announced outside the Sindh Assembly. This brought to 12 the number of articles suspended by the federation government after the imposition of the governor's rule in Sindh. Earlier the government had suspended articles 130 and 136 regarding the powers of the speaker. Prime Minister's advisor on Sindh, Syed Ghous Ali Shah, announced the Sindh budget at a press conference and by passed the Sindh Assembly.

June 24:
The Commander of the US Central Command (CENTCOM), General Anthony Zinni, meets the Chief of the Army Staff, General Pervez Musharraf, to defuse the Kargil situation. In Washington, the US state department cautions that things could "get bad" for Pakistan. "That's for sure," a senior official said without denying that Gen Anthony Zinni had extended some kind of an implied "warning" to withdraw from Kargil.

June 25:
The European Union called for the immediate withdrawal of the infiltrators and urged both countries to work for the immediate cessation of fighting, to fully respect the line of control and to prevent further cross border infiltration.

June 27:
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif sends a special envoy to New Delhi in an apparent effort to ease the tension in Kashmir. The emissary, former foreign secretary Niaz Naik, met with Indian PM Atal Behari Vajpayee and his National Security Adviser Brajesh Mishra.

Jun 28:
Prime Minister Sharif visits Beijing and hold talks with his Chinese counterpart Zhu Rongji. The China Daily reporting on the meeting between Nawaz Sharif and Premier Zhu Rongji, said that China had sincerely hoped that Pakistan and India would alleviate tensions in Kashmir through talks and return stability to the region soon.
* Pakistan and China signed four agreements following a meeting between the delegations of the two countries. These agreements were about cooperation in the development of Super-7 aircraft, cooperation in the cultural sector, cooperation in electronic media and consular cooperation under which the counselor in Hong Kong would look after Pakistan's interests in Macao when it returns to China in December.

June 29:
China called upon India and Pakistan to resolve all their disputes through dialogue, a Foreign Office spokesman told newsmen after an hour-long meeting between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Chairman of the Committee of the Chinese People's Congress, Li Peng, in Beijing at the Great Hall.

July 2:
Pakistan suffered a setback in the US Congress when the House Foreign Relations Committee adopted a resolution calling for suspension of IMF, World Bank and Asian Bank loans to Pakistan until the Mujahideen occupying Kargil withdraw across the LoC.

July 4:
President Bill Clinton and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif reached an agreement under which the freedom fighters who crossed into certain parts of occupied Kashmir would withdraw. Clinton and Sharif said in a joint statement after three hours of talks: "It was agreed between the president and the prime minister that concrete steps will be taken for the restoration of the Line of Control".

July 6:
British Prime Minister Tony Blair terms the joint statement issued after the meeting of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and President Bill Clinton as a "real progress" in reducing tension between India and Pakistan. A British spokesman said at the conclusion of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's 30-minute meeting with Prime Minister Tony Blair that the two were of the opinion that the a quick beginning should be made in the actions proposed in the joint statement.

July 9:
Political and religious parties rejected the Clinton-Nawaz declaration and the decision to seek a pull-out of Mujahideen from Kargil as they held rallies in Lahore. The rallies were organized by the Pakistan Awami Ittehad, the Jamaat-i-Islami, the Pakistan Awami Tehrik, the Khaksar Tehrik and the Markazi Jamaat Ahal-i-Hadith.

July 11:
Pakistan announces the beginning of the "disengagement" of the Mujahideen and their withdrawal from the heights of Kaksar and Mushkoh in Kargil sector, following an agreement on the modalities of de-escalation and sector-wise cessation of ground and air operations between Pakistan and Indian directors-general military operations (DGMOs). The directors-general of military operations of the two countries had held their first contact on hotline, and then met at Wagah to decide the modalities for de-escalation.

July 12:
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, in a televised address, said that there was an imminent threat of war with India which was no more a secret and that there were "diplomatic complications" which were getting extremely difficult to be handled. Giving details of his US visit, he said when the situation was becoming serious he decided to meet President Clinton.

July 13:
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's televised address to the nation was rejected by the opposition parties as nothing but acceptance of government's complete failure on the diplomatic front. "The question arises as to why they had decided to launch the Kargil operation," Deputy Opposition Leader Syed Khurshid Shah said in his reaction to the prime minister's speech. "If they have to go back to the Lahore process then who had advised them to go for the Kargil heights, he asked, adding that who was responsible for heavy loss of lives both to civilians and Pakistan army soldiers and officers at the Line of Control.

July 16:
The attorney-general of Pakistan, justifying the Washington communiqué, says that Pakistan is completely isolated and economically could not have sustained a full-fledged war. The country is already 50 years behind the developed world and would have been thrown another 50 years back had there been a war.

July 20:
The Sindh Provincial Assembly passed a unanimous resolution condemning the extra-judicial killings in Karachi and demanded of the provincial government to desist from such inhuman actions.

July 25:
The chairman of Urban Democratic Front (UDF) and media coordinator for the opposition Pakistan Awami Ittehad (PAI), Hussain Haqqani, is released from captivity. Mr Haqqani was kidnapped on May 4 in Rawalpindi Cantonment while driving with his brother, a serving army officer, and was allegedly subjected to severe interrogation and torture. He told a press conference in Karachi that he was kicked and punched by his captors who wanted to know why did he leave Mian Saheb in 1993 in the first place.
* The 90 per cent out of a total of 32,000 troops of Pakistan Army were called back to barracks after the completion of the first phase of the task of putting Wapda on right track, besides collecting a record revenue of Rs 112.74 billions during the last 11 months. The remaining 10 per cent troops were scheduled to stay for the second phase at 680sub-divisions,146 divisions, 36 circles and 8 chief executives levels across the country in Wapda.

July 27:
The National Assembly passed the 16th Constitutional Amendment by two-thirds majority, extending the provincial quota system for another 20 years. One hundred and sixty two members from the treasury benches combined with those from the opposition and independent benches passed the amendment in Article 27 of the Constitution. Four MQM members, who were present, opposed the amendment. The National Assembly had in 1974 passed a bill by amending the Constitution, fixing quota system for different provinces in the country for a period of 10 years. In 1984, the period was extended by another 10 years, during the regime of late General Ziaul Haq. It was later felt that since equal opportunity of education and other facilities are not yet available to all citizens of Pakistan, the period of twenty years specified in Clause (1) of Article 27 of the Constitution be extended to forty years. The smaller provinces, Sindh, NWFP and Balochistan, are in favor of continuation of the quota system.

July 30:
The Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan observed a country-wide protest against what it called government's undemocratic and illegal tactics to sabotage its Kargil-Kashmir March. Rallies were staged in all major cities and towns in which speakers condemned the government for "blocking people" from attending the march in Lahore a week earlier.

Rumpus marred Senate proceedings as the house voted to reject the resolution against the murder of Samia Sarwar and provision of necessary protection to human rights activists Asma Jahangir and Hina Jilani. The resolution was presented in the house on April 26 with the signatures of 22 members but most of the signatories withdrew their support while some others chose to stay away from the house. Only three members of the PPP and an independent member, Jameeluddin Aali, stood at their seats when Senate Chairman Wasim Sajjad put to vote an impromptu motion of ANP leader Ajmal Khattak that the house should not take up the resolution. Majority of the members present in the house, including that of PML, ANP, PKMAP and JWP stood up at their seats in support of Mr Khattak's motion. In the heat of the moment, the chairman even did not announce the number of senators who voted for the verbal motion of Mr Khattak.

Aug 4:
Foreign investment in Pakistan dropped by 51 percent during 1998 due to the US-led international sanctions over its nuclear tests according to official statistics. The flow of foreign investment declined from 822 million dollars to just 403 million dollars during fiscal 1997-98 which ended June 30. Direct foreign investment also plunged 37 percent to 376 million dollars while portfolio investment fell 87 percent to 27 million dollars. The leading investors were the United States, Britain and Japan.
* As many as 216 officers and personnel were dismissed from the Sindh police service in the wake of public complaints of excesses, manhandling, misconduct and corruption while another 1,226 policemen were given different punishments during the last nine months, according to a police spokesman in Karachi.

Aug 6:
About 30 human rights and women rights organizations staged a demonstration in front of the parliament house to protest against the scrapping of a resolution condemning the honour killings of women in the Senate. The organizations included HRCP, Aurat Foundation, Women Action Forum and Democratic Women's Association. The demonstrators chanted slogans against the senators who opposed the resolution criticizing honour killings. They decried the killings of women in the name of honour and condemned the insensitivity of the legislators and ministers on the issue.

Aug 8:
The pilot production of Al-Khalid, the main battle tank of the Pakistan Army, starts at the Heavy Industries in Taxila. The go ahead for the production was given after a formal agreement was signed between Chinese officials and the Heavy Industries' chairman earlier this month. During trials Al-Khalid attained over 85 per cent hits on mobile battlefield targets at a distance of two kilometres while moving at a speed of 40 kilometres per hour. The tank has an automatic gun loading system which enhances the rate of fire to 8 rounds per minute. It is also fitted with a modern remote-controlled anti-aircraft weapon system which can be fired while remaining inside the tank.

Aug 10:
All the 16 officers and sailors on board were killed when a Pakistan Navy training aircraft was shot down by two Indian fighter planes. The wreckage of the plane was located 2km inside Pakistan territory in marshy areas, Badin district, around 100 nautical miles off Karachi. The plane - French-made Breguet Atlantic maritime patrol aircraft - had left PNS Mehran airbase in the city at 9.15am for a routine training flight to the coastal areas of southern Sindh. It was scheduled to return to its base after four hours.


Pakistan is ruled by three As - Army, America and Allah.
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