July 16, 2024


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Post-Colonial South Asia in Contrast to Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s Life

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Post-Colonial South Asia in Contrast to Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s Life

Independent Pakistan

August 14, 1947, Sun rose and glittered the eyes of Muslims in their newly formed independent state. Bloodshed was there, millions of people died, an uncountable number of people migrated from India to Pakistan. A saturated system of control and authority was now required to create a balance among political, economic, and social aspects of the new state.

Liaquat Ali Khan was crowned as the first Prime Minister of Pakistan, whereas, Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah was accounted as the first Governor General of Pakistan. In 1956, Iskander Mirza was accountable for the presidency of the state. Moreover, he took the charge in office and continued till 1958.

Upsets and Riots

Pakistan was divided into two regions, West Pakistan and East Pakistan. There was majority of Bengali Muslims that migrated to the new country. However, a new clash began when the majority Bengali Muslims started the “Bengali Language Movement” in 1950, as they wanted Bengali to be declared as an official language of Pakistan. This was not possible for the authorities to do as Urdu was the universal neutral language which was understood and spoken by majority people of several communities, castes, races, and identities.

This built a sense of social injustice in the hearts and minds of Bengali Muslims and hence they started developing a hatred for the Pakistani non-Bengalis.

1964 was another year of horrible happenings and events when East Pakistan Riots were brought up. Muslim communities started attacking the Hindu communities not only to loot them for wealth and money but also to forcedly convert them to Islam.

1971, was another year of liberation war, where Pakistan got broken up into two pieces namely, West Pakistan and East Pakistan (Bangladesh). Indian influences led to this partition when Pakistan was under military control since last a few years of General Ayub Khan and General Yahya Khan, who was his successor in the year 1969.

1971 – Separation of East Pakistan

A story about the people, who gave birth to the dream of Pakistan, and then after twenty-three years watching that dream getting killed by the military rulers of the western wing was painful. The people of the eastern wing were denied for labors, they were denied employment, they were denied for the voice of their own affairs and ownership rights. They stayed poor so that Islamabad could get rich and strong. With those riches, they create a strong powerful military machine.

In 1971, General Yahya Khan was forced to listen to the voice of Bengalis. Bengalis were expressed the first time in the history of free elections of 1971 as a separate identity. People of Bengal supported Shaikh Mujeeb-ur-Rehman, who was the leader of Awami National Party. The Bengalis didn’t even realize the terrible prices they were about to pay and horrible crises that they were about to face. Moreover, General Yahya Khan and other politicians of the West pretended to negotiate with Mujib-ur-Rahman. However, the military of Pakistan protested a crackdown. General Tikka Khan, who was known as the “Butcher” of this whole as the military governor, on 25th March 1971, ordered the army to move and crush Bengal.

For the military power, religion has no meanings. The western wing of Pakistan army, killed each and everyone irrespective of the religion, in spite of a word being associated with it, that was “Bengali”. The western army killed Bengali Mullahs in the mosques, Bengali Hindus in the temples, Bengali Christians and Buddhists in the churches. People were burnt

to death. Terror and violence became the order of the day in the East Bengal and the reign of terror continued.

Furthermore, the west army believed that Bengal was a traitor to Pakistan. Women, kids, and aged people as well were killed by the invasion of West Pakistani soldiers. East Pakistan i.e. Bengal, became a giant graveyard. The west Pakistani air force launched fighting jets in order to develop and create disgrace among the Bengalis and to terrify them. However, due to this irreversible and unorganized ethical act of West Pakistan, the leader of Awami National League, Shaikh Mujib-ur-Rehman, raised the flag of Bengal high and declared Bengal as a separate and independent state of a separate identity than Pakistan.

The people who were unable to fight with West Pakistan crossed the borders, escaped from the country, and entered into India. India influenced Bengalis over this war. As a very large number of people were migrated to India, this was also known as one of the biggest migrations that ever took place. Furthermore, India planned and structured a proper refugee system for the migrated people that were now part of the Indian community. The Indian government set up camps, medical aids, meals, and shelter for the migrated Bengalis. Many people died during migration whereas, cholera, now, was the new enemy that caught lots of lives.

Moreover, individuals that wanted to build a sense of self-defense against Pakistan armies within themselves, such as students, parents, and officers, started early and basic training without arms, using a natural resource as bamboo shoots. Along with that in Bengal, a recruitment drive took place in search of eligible men so that they could be trained as army and weaponry officers for the eastern wing.

Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and The Political Modernity in Pakistan

Islam is our faith, democracy is our politics, socialism is our economy, all power to the people. Today’s time period is a distinguished period of world history that could be easily differentiated from the pre-modern world. Modern identities have been created that enables the individuals to think from a different point of view, but, paradoxically. This sense of modernity provides a platform to the people for their thoughtful self-cultivation.

“Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto”, the great Bhutto, educated from the leading University of Oxford, and trained as Barrister, joined politics as an effective member of President Iskander Mirza’s cabinet. He was appointed as foreign minister in the year 1963, just 4 years before he formed his own political party. Bhutto was dismissed from the employment soon and hence then he decided to build his own party that was named as “Pakistan People’s Party (PPP)”, in the year 1967, and lead it as progressing way for Pakistan. It was the first socialist party of Pakistan that belonged to the left wing, being against social injustice and socialist hierarchy of class, race, religion, etc.

The social, economic, and political conditions of Pakistan were not stable. There were unbalanced imageries, rhetoric, and communication, due to which the country was on way to lack of modernization and poverty. The country was getting poor, not only economically, but also in structuring proper authorities for control, development, and establishment. However, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto played a great vital role in caretaking the responsibilities of Pakistan.

“Food, Clothes, and Shelter”, this motto of the first socialist political party of Pakistan i.e. Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), always show its promising establishment of the base in the country. PPP, in the year 1967, was founded by the great and known personality of political society, “Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto”. Bhutto has always considered his party to reform and rebuild Pakistan as an established nation. Economically, socially and politically, Bhutto wanted to rebuild confidence and rebuilt hope in the hearts of people living in every area of Pakistan because a confident individual can contribute very honestly in building a saturated nation.

Incorporation of modernity, in an orthodox tackled nation, is a deep concern that includes all the disciplines of life. Either it is social life, practical life, professional life, economic or religious commodities. For a nation to prosper, economic stability and progress vision is a topic to debate about the most.

In 1964, when east Pakistan riot was in full swing, the conditions and situations enforced General Ayub Khan to resign of his post and to dissolve his power, that was at a very high peak during that time. However, General Ayub Khan gave his powers to General Yahya Khan in the year 1969. General Yahya Khan, the third president of Pakistan, enforced martial law and suspended the constitution in 1969. Moreover, he announced a framework for general elections to happen for the very first time in 1970. Since this was before the East Pakistan partition, therefore, a unified framework was implemented in both the wings of the West and East Pakistan. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was the representative from the western wing (Pakistan People’s Party) whereas, Shaikh Mujib-ur-Rehman was the representative from the eastern wing (Awami National Party). As the result of general elections, 1970 was announced, it resulted in Pakistan People’s Party winning the majority seats from the west (a total of 39.1% of votes), with no seat won by Shaikh Mujib-ur-Rehman. The same situation was in the east, Shaikh Mujib-ur-Rehman’s Awami National Party won the majority in the eastern wing. However, Bhutto was elected as the fourth president of Pakistan, where he has served as an inspiring figure for the country.

Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s Services for Pakistan

The fourth president of Pakistan belonged to the first socialist party of the country. He demolished the feudal system in Pakistan. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto has served very efficiently for the country either it is a political, social, or economic aspect even before taking the power of control and even after that.

Bhutto, Foreign Minister of Pakistan

Bhutto was appointed as foreign minister during the period of General Ayub Khan, where he made efforts for solving the major issue of Kashmir, however, this resulted in the inclusion of China, despite two countries i.e. India and Pakistan, for owning the land. As a foreign minister, it was his duty to build healthy relationships with the foreign countries that were meant to be beneficial for Pakistan’s progress. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto presented a part of the land from Kashmir that was measured as 750 sq km to China and this was named as “Sino-Pak Boundary Agreement”.

Simla Agreement – 1972

In the year 1972, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto visited Simla, in the state of Himachal Pradesh, to meet Indian Prime Minister Indra Gandhi. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto demanded to release ninety-three thousand prisoners of war to Pakistan. Prisoners of war were a part of humanitarian problem i.e. crises. However, Indra Gandhi refused this demand of the Pakistani President but she got impressed by the principles of Bhutto’s ideology, his personality, and vision that enabled her to present 5000 sq.mi of territory back to Pakistan. Hence, paying a small price was a huge diplomatic success.

Kashmir Dispute:

The ceased fire line in 1948, was now turned into “Line of Control” after the Simla agreement in the region of Kashmir. The line of control is basically the de-facto border, that cannot be crossed until the final solution of Kashmir issue is accepted. India and Pakistan concluded that they will bi-literally decide the future of Kashmir i.e. without the interference of any third party. Before 1972 Simla agreement, the Kashmir dispute issue was under the observation of United Nations.

In the western part of Kashmir, the lower left part of Kashmir is known as “Azad Kashmir”. It is the part of Pakistan where Muslims are found in the majority and along with the upper left part (northern areas), commonly known as, “Gilgit” and “Baltistan”. Moreover, in the eastern part of Kashmir, the lower left part if known as the “Valley of Kashmir” with a Muslim majority. It is the part of India right now along with the lower right part that is known as “Jammu”, having majorities Hindu. The rest part of Kashmir is called “Ladakh”. Ladakh consists Buddhists around 40%, 40% Muslims, and 20% other religions. Ladakh is also under the control of India. However, the issue of Kashmir is not concluded to a final solution till date.

The Constitution of 1973

Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, after the martial law got dissolved, asked for a proper framed national constitution for Pakistan. This had never ever been resulted in a success for any other leader before Bhutto. Bhutto, in one of speech, pointed out that General Ayub Khan criticized and taunted that the people of Pakistan have not much talent to create and develop a constitution for themselves, therefore they will never be able to get it. However, efforts of Bhutto made it possible and Pakistan got the first acceptable constitution from the National Assembly, in the year 1973, having Islam as the basic ideology of the country. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto resigned from the post of president to take the charge of first ever elected Prime Minister of Pakistan. He kept on improvising the constitution and modifying it with all good that he thought should be made part of agreeable terms in Pakistan.

Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and The Economic Modernity in Pakistan

PPP served as a strong movement when it comes to economic stability. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto created a balanced economic setup program, where he tried to nationalize the secondary and tertiary sector of Pakistan. Bhutto was the first leader who presented this nationalization theory that was promulgated afterward in order to create socio-economic reforms so that economy of Pakistan could face a great incline. PPP was responsible for founding Pakistan’s first Atomic Bomb program which gave Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, the title of being Father of Nuclear Deterrence Program. Bhutto knew that a country’s progress lies in its economy. Hence, he tried his level best in order to bring an increase in it. Industrialization is the best source of economic growth and it was very well understood by PPP.

Besides, industries, PPP also focused brilliantly on developing research institutes, that produced high-class researchers and students. Production of these high caliber individuals resulted in the betterment of the country. Moreover, educational institutions and development centers were built, so that, quality education should be provided in order to persuade the process of emerging betterment of the country. PPP has always promoted the study on nuclear development because Pakistan today is the 7th largest atomic nation and has the ability to step up on the list. However, better atomic administrative programs can contribute vividly to country’s economic and social growth.

Pakistan People’s Party has contributed extensively to the social, economic, political, and cultural development of Pakistan in the world. It has been successfully indulged in taking Pakistan to new levels of stability among other countries and states. Moreover, PPP has collaborated in order to persuade Pakistan after a sustained effort. The work done by the political party of Bhutto and his followers is much worth, that includes the building of extensive road systems that spread all over the country within and beyond minority populated areas to majority populated areas, especially in the areas of Sindh.

During the PPP rule, the main source of progress for a country in the world was through agriculture and industry. However, PPP made remarkable efforts in order to reach the required mark and meet the required level of expected global demand. Several cities were developed using the urbanization planning system. Those rural cities were developed and

provided with facilities that created comfort zones for the people residing there. Among all the departments of the country, 4% of the total workforce was incorporated in the primary sector where 36% of the workforce was enforced in the secondary and tertiary sector of Pakistan. It focused on the provision of services instead of goods. Services like transportation, conversation, military, export/import, trade, communication in business means, and related activities were considered.

Stagflations of Pakistan People’s Party – A Structural Downturn

Every political party faces phases of downturns and shutdowns. Pakistan People’s Party after years of inclined progress was now in the downturn mode. The political party faced periods of stagflation, where they led to dismiss their power several times. Under the leadership of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Pakistan People’s Party went through the first and second period of stagflation. Between the years 1979 and 1988, PPP faced the third, heavily upset, period of stagflation when PPP was dropped out of the 1985 general elections by General Zia-ul-Haq, who was the sixth president of Pakistan, being the longest served head till date.

First Period of Stagflation:

The first period of stagflation came into the process when PPP faced a major economic downturn, in means of economy, currency, and industries. Pakistani currency i.e. PKR was devalued. All the power of a country is set into the labor work. Heavy mechanical industries were out-staffed since the employees were not being provided with their absolute wages with respect to the labor they did. This resulted in no production and caused a loss of approximately 254 million rupees along with the cancellation of the economic system, that was planned by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto.

Second Period of Stagflation:

Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s presented economic policy produced a hug inevitable loss in the secondary and tertiary sector of the country. The budget was deflected and the graph of progress was going down day by day. The contribution of Pakistan in GDP was declined and started decreasing at a quick rate. Unemployment was dispersed in the country.

In economic language, “Gini Coefficient” is the term, used to describe the measure of inequality. It is a clean and statistical representation of the economy, wealth, and income, distributed among the nation’s residents. In rural areas, the Gini coefficient was increased by a good proportion of 22%, whereas in urban areas, it increased by 10%.

Unemployment in the 1970s, was increased by 16%. This rate of unemployment was three times the rate in the 1960s i.e. only 5%. However, this contributed to a great downfall for Pakistan People’s Party and Bhutto himself.

Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and General Zia-ul-Haq

In the general elections of 1977, Pakistan People’s Party once again grabbed the authorities by winning the elections with a 61.1% of the total votes cast. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was again the front face of Pakistan. There were conflicts about PPP being heavily rigged. However, in the year 1977 General Zia-ul-Haq imposed martial law in the country by deposing the power of Pakistan People’s Party and appointed himself as the Chief Martial Law Administrator till he became the sixth president in 1978. Zia-ul-Haq hanged Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto (Shaheed) till death in 1979 as Bhutto was charged with murdering Ahmed Raza Kasuri’s father.

Moreover, it was now a time of great depression for Pakistan People’s Party. In the elections of 1985, General Zia-ul-Haq regarded PPP as non-participant and hence, the party was unable to stand in the elections and fight for the seat. Therefore, Muhatarma Benazir Bhutto, elder daughter of Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, started a movement for the restoration of the lost democracy, against the ruthless dictatorship of Zia-ul-Haq and this resulted in she, becoming the first elected woman Prime Minister of Pakistan in the general elections of 1988, where she served as the leader of the opposition party for the very first time.

Pakistan and India have faced a several numbers of wars between them due to many issues. The issues covered the economy, policy, social aspects, land reforms, agriculture, the primary sector, secondary sector, tertiary sector, and etc. However, the separation of Pakistan from India and then Bengal from Pakistan was anyhow a good sign for the western region. Although, it was not required Bengalis were a separate identity and their demands were agreeable and justified. Moreover, this does affect the politics of Pakistan and led to an unbalanced symmetry of authorities and their work for the country.

However, in 1970, Pakistan People’s Party got the charge. It was at high peaks of success mode unless a few triggering events took place. Those worse events that are discussed above, left a critical and dishearten impact of disgrace on the image of PPP. Pakistan People’s Party always has been a strong contender for the opposition and was the synonym to the words progress, leadership, confidence, trust, wealth, truth, loyalty, expertise, exploration. But after the death of Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, PPP faced a horror downfall and has not performed well in the electoral sessions of the country. The party has been dismissed several times in the 1990s. The mysterious death of Murtaza Ali Bhutto (Bhutto’s son) and Benazir Bhutto is still a question mark left. These unorganized events led PPP to a decline of political movements and hence today, the party is not in its full swing but seeming to achieve the target of re-winning the elections in the year 2018.

In contrast to the years the 1970s to 1990s and 2000s, Pakistan was in a good situation in the early years of governance. PPP in its early years served for the sake of the country, despite their plans got canceled and unsuccessful, the well-wishing for the country was visible. However, in contrast to today, visible situation of Pakistan’s government, it looks as if PPP will be holding the card of Ministry in the upcoming elections of 2018. Majority of followers believe that PPP is the party of building confidence, humanization, socialism, and nationalization, that is true in my opinion. Individuals are willing to bring PPP back to hold the charge of Pakistani government despite being going through an unusual culprit phase. The party is lacking behind in many aspects of the society, still with a hope of winning the general elections of 2018, with Bilawal Bhutto Zardari (son of Benazir Bhutto) representing PPP.

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