Zulfikar Ali Bhutto
Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (Urdu: ذوالفقار علی بھٹو, Sindhi: ذوالفقار علي ڀُٽو, IPA: [zʊlfɪqɑːɾ ɑli bʱʊʈːoː]) (January 5, 1928–April 4, 1979) was a Pakistani politician who served as the fourth President of Pakistan from 1971 to 1973 and as the ninth Prime Minister of Pakistan from 1973 to 1977. He was the founder of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), the largest and most influential political party in Pakistan. His daughter Benazir Bhutto also served twice as prime minister; she was assassinated on December 27, 2007.
Educated at the University of California, Berkeley, in the United States and University of Oxford in the United Kingdom, Bhutto was noted for his economic initiatives and authoring Pakistan's nuclear programme. He was executed in 1979 after the Supreme Court of Pakistan sentenced him to death for authorizing the murder of a political opponent, in a move that many believe was done under the directives of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq. The perception is that this was politically motivated judicial murder.
Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was born to Khursheed Begum née Lakhi Bai and Sir Shah Nawaz Bhutto. He was born in a prominent Sindhi Muslim family.
Bhutto's father was a prominent political figure in the Indian colonial
government. Bhutto was born in his parent's residence near Larkana in what later became the province of Sindh. He was their third child — their first one, Sikandar Ali, died from pneumonia at age seven in 1914 and the second child, Imdad Ali, died of cirrhosis at the age of 39 in 1953. His father was a wealthy landlord, a zamindar, and a prominent politician in Sindh, who enjoyed an influential relationship with the officials of the British Raj. As a young boy, Bhutto moved to Worli Seaface in Bombay (now Mumbai) to study at the Cathedral and John Connon School. During this period, he also became a student activist in the League's Pakistan Movement.
In 1943, his marriage was arranged with Shireen Amir Begum (died
January 19, 2003 in Karachi). He later left her, however, in order to
remarry. In 1947, Bhutto was admitted to the University of Southern California.
In 1949, Bhutto transferred to the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned an honours degree in political science. Here he would become interested in the theories of socialism,
delivering a series of lectures on the feasibility of socialism in
Islamic countries.During this time, Bhutto's father, Sir Shahnawaz,
played a controversial role in the affairs of the state of Junagadh (now in Gujarat). Coming to power in a palace coup as the dewan, he secured the accession of the state to Pakistan, which was ultimately negated by Indian intervention in December, 1947. In June, 1950 Bhutto travelled to England to study law at Christ Church, Oxford. Upon finishing his studies, he was called to the bar at Lincoln's Inn in the year 1953 (the same school at which Muhammad Ali Jinnah studied law) .
Bhutto married his second wife, the Iranian-Kurdish Begum Nusrat Ispahani who was a Shi'a Muslim, in Karachi on September 8, 1951. Their first child, his daughter Benazir, was born in 1953. She was followed by Murtaza in 1954, a second daughter, Sanam, in 1957, and the youngest child, Shahnawaz Bhutto, in 1958. He accepted the post of lecturer at the Sindh Muslim College, from where he was also awarded an honorary law degree by the then college President, Mr. Hassanally A. Rahman
before establishing himself in a legal practice in Karachi. He also
took over the management of his family's estate and business interests
after his father's death.
In 1957, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto became the youngest member of Pakistan's delegation to the United Nations. He would address the United Nations Sixth Committee on Aggression on October 25, 1957 and lead Pakistan's deputation to the first United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea
in 1958. In the same year, Bhutto became the youngest Pakistani cabinet
minister when he was given charge of the energy ministry by President
Muhammad Ayub Khan, who had seized power and declared martial law.
He was subsequently promoted to head the ministries of commerce,
information and industries. Bhutto became a close and trusted advisor
to Ayub, rising in influence and power despite his youth and relative
inexperience in politics. Bhutto aided Ayub in negotiating the Indus Water Treaty with India in 1960. In 1961, Bhutto negotiated an oil exploration agreement with the Soviet Union, which also agreed to provide economic and technical aid to Pakistan.
Sheikh Abdullah with Ayub Khan and Z.A.Bhutto 1964.
In 1962, he was appointed Pakistan's foreign minister. His swift
rise to power also brought him national prominence and popularity.
As foreign minister, Bhutto significantly transformed Pakistan's
hitherto pro-Western foreign policy. While maintaining a prominent role
for Pakistan within the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization and the Central Treaty Organization,
Bhutto began asserting a foreign policy course for Pakistan that was
independent of U.S. influence. Bhutto criticised the U.S. for providing
military aid to India during and after the Sino-Indian War
of 1962, which was seen as an abrogation of Pakistan's alliance with
the U.S. Bhutto worked to establish stronger relations with the People's Republic of China. Bhutto visited Beijing
and helped Ayub negotiate trade and military agreements with the
Chinese regime, which agreed to help Pakistan in a large number of
military and industrial projects. Bhutto also signed the Sino-Pakistan Boundary Agreement on March 2, 1963 that transferred 750 square kilometres of territory from Pakistan-administered Kashmir to Chinese control. Bhutto asserted his belief in non-alignment, making Pakistan an influential member in non-aligned organisations. Believing in pan-Islamic unity, Bhutto developed closer relations with nations such as Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and other Arab states.
Bhutto advocated hardline and confrontational policies against India over the Kashmir conflict and other issues. A 17 day war broke out between Pakistan and India on 6 September 1965 known as the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965.
This war was an aftermath of brief skirmishes that took place between
March and August 1965 on the international boundaries in the Rann of Kutch, Kashmir and Punjab. Bhutto joined Ayub in Tashkent to negotiate a peace treaty with the Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri.
Ayub and Shastri agreed to exchange prisoners of war and withdraw
respective forces to pre-war boundaries. This agreement was deeply
unpopular in Pakistan, causing major political unrest against Ayub's
regime. Bhutto's criticism of the final agreement caused a major rift
between him and Ayub Khan. Initially denying the rumours, Bhutto
resigned in June, 1966 and expressed strong opposition to Ayub's regime.
Pakistan Peoples Party
Following his resignation, large crowds gathered to listen to
Bhutto's speech upon his arrival in Lahore on June 21, 1967. Tapping a
wave of anger and opposition against Ayub, Bhutto began travelling
across the country to deliver political speeches. In a speech in
October, 1966 Bhutto declared the PPP's beliefs, "Islam is our faith, democracy is our policy, socialism is our economy. All power to the people."
On November 30, 1967 Bhutto founded the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in
Lahore, establishing a strong base of political support in Punjab,
Sindh and amongst the Muhajir communities. Bhutto's party became a part
of the pro-democracy movement involving diverse political parties from
all across Pakistan. PPP activists staged large protests and strikes in
different parts of the country, increasing pressure on Ayub to resign.
Bhutto's arrest on November 12, 1968 sparked greater political unrest.
After his release, Bhutto attended the Round Table Conference called by
Ayub in Rawalpindi, but refused to accept Ayub's continuation in office and the East Pakistani politician Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's Six point movement for regional autonomy.
Following Ayub's resignation, the new president Gen. Yahya Khan
promised to hold parliamentary elections on December 7, 1970. Bhutto's
party won a large number of seats from constituencies in West Pakistan. However, Sheikh Mujib's Awami League
won an outright majority from the constituencies located in East
Pakistan. Bhutto refused to accept an Awami League government and
famously promised to "break the legs" of any elected PPP member who
dared to attend the inaugural session of the National Assembly of Pakistan.
Capitalising on West Pakistani fears of East Pakistani separatism,
Bhutto demanded that Sheikh Mujib form a coalition with the PPP.
Under substantial pressure from Bhutto and other West Pakistani
political parties, Yahya postponed the inaugural session of the
National Assembly after talks with Sheikh Mujib failed. Amidst popular outrage in East Pakistan, Major Ziaur Rahman declared the independence of "Bangladesh"
on March 26, 1971 after Mujibur was arrested by the Pakistani Army,
which had been ordered by Yahya to suppress political activities. .
While supportive of the army's actions and working to rally
international support, Bhutto distanced himself from the Yahya regime.
He refused to accept Yahya's scheme to appoint Bengali politician Nurul Amin as prime minister, with Bhutto as deputy prime minister. Indian intervention
in East Pakistan led to the very bitter defeat of Pakistani forces, who
surrendered on December 16, 1971. Bhutto and others condemned Yahya for
failing to protect Pakistan's unity. Isolated, Yahya resigned on
December 20 and transferred power to Bhutto, who became the president,
army commander-in-chief as well as the first civilian chief martial law
Leader of Pakistan
Bhutto speaking in Simla.
As president, Bhutto addressed the nation via radio and television,
saying "My dear countrymen, my dear friends, my dear students,
labourers, peasants… those who fought for Pakistan… We are facing the
worst crisis in our country's life, a deadly crisis. We have to pick up
the pieces, very small pieces, but we will make a new Pakistan, a
prosperous and progressive Pakistan." He placed Yahya under house
arrest, brokered a ceasefire and ordered the release of Sheikh Mujib,
who was held prisoner by the army. To implement this, Bhutto reversed
the verdict of Mujib's court trial that had taken place earlier, in
which the presiding Brigadier Rahimuddin Khan (later General) had sentenced Mujib to death. Appointing a new cabinet, Bhutto appointed Gen. Gul Hasan as Chief of Army Staff.
On January 2, 1972 Bhutto announced the nationalisation of all major
industries, including iron and steel, heavy engineering, heavy
electricals, petrochemicals, cement and public utilities.
A new labour policy was announced increasing workers rights and the
power of trade unions. Although he came from a feudal background
himself, Bhutto announced reforms limiting land ownership and a
government take-over of over a million acres (4,000 km²) to distribute
to landless peasants. More than 2,000 civil servants were dismissed on
charges of corruption.
Bhutto also dismissed the military chiefs on March 3 after they refused
orders to suppress a major police strike in Punjab. He appointed Gen. Tikka Khan
as the new Chief of the Army Staff in March 1972 as he felt the General
would not interfere in political matters and would concentrate on
rehabilitating the Pakistan Army. Bhutto convened the National Assembly
on April 14, rescinded martial law on April 21 and charged the
legislators with writing a new constitution.
Bhutto visited India to meet Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and negotiated a formal peace agreement and the release of 93,000 Pakistani prisoners of war. The two leaders signed the Shimla Agreement, which committed both nations to establish a new yet temporaliy Cease-fire Line in Kashmir and obligated them to resolve disputes peacefully through bilateral talks. Bhutto also promised to hold a future summit for the peaceful resolution of the Kashmir dispute and pledged to recognise Bangladesh.
Although he secured the release of Pakistani soldiers held by India,
Bhutto was criticised by many in Pakistan for allegedly making too many
concessions to India. It is theorised that Bhutto feared his downfall
if he could not secure the release of Pakistani soldiers and the return
of territory occupied by Indian forces. Bhutto established an atomic power development programme and inaugurated the first Pakistani atomic reactor, built in collaboration with Canada in Karachi
on November 28. On March 30, 59 military officers were arrested by army
troops for allegedly plotting a coup against Bhutto, who appointed
then-Brigadier Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq
to head a military tribunal to investigate and try the suspects. The
National Assembly approved the new constitution, which Bhutto signed
into effect on April 12. The constitution proclaimed an "Islamic Republic" in Pakistan with a parliamentary form of government. On August 10, Bhutto turned over the post of president to Fazal Ilahi Chaudhry, assuming the office of prime minister instead.
Bhutto officially recognized Bangladesh in July. Making an official visit to Bangladesh, Bhutto was criticized in Pakistan for laying flowers at a memorial for Bangladeshi "freedom fighters."
Bhutto continued to develop closer relations with China as well as
Saudi Arabia and other Muslim nations. Bhutto hosted the Second Islamic
Summit of Muslim nations in Lahore between February 22 and February 24
Bhutto, however, faced considerable pressure from Islamic religious leaders to declare the Ahmadiya
communities as non-Muslims. Failing to restrain sectarian violence and
rioting, Bhutto and the National Assembly amended the constitution to
that effect. Bhutto intensified his nationalisation programme,
extending government control over agricultural processing and consumer
industries. Bhutto also, with advice from Admiral S.M. Ahsan, inaugurated Port Qasim,
designed to expand harbour facilities near Karachi. However, the
performance of the Pakistani economy declined amidst increasing
bureaucracy and a decline in private sector confidence. In a surprise
move in 1976, Bhutto appointed Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq to replace Gen. Tikka Khan, surpassing five generals senior to Zia.
President of Pakistan
A Pakistan International Airlines flight was sent to fetch Bhutto from New York, who at that time was presenting Pakistan's case before the United Nations Security Council
on the East Pakistan Crises. Bhutto returned home on December 18, 1971.
On December 20, he was taken to the President House in Rawalpindi where
he took over two positions from Yahya Khan, one as President and the
other as Chief Martial Law Administrator. Thus he was the first
civilian Chief Martial Law Administrator of the dismembered Pakistan.
The new President inherited a disheartened war-weary nation. In this
dark hour, he addressed the nation and promised to fight back. Bhutto's
intentions to restore national confidence were in several shapes. He
spoke about democracy, a new Constitution, and a modified federal and
parliamentary system. He reached out to opposition leaders Abdul Wali Khan and Mufti Mahmud,
signing an agreement regarding lifting the emergency and allowing
opposition governments to be formed. He took steps to stabilize the
situation by successfully negotiating the return of the 93,000 prisoners of war and a peaceful settlement with India. He took steps to ameliorate poverty and to revitalize the economy, industry and agriculture.
He gave the third Constitution to the country and established
civilian authority over the armed forces in the political setup. In
early 1972, Bhutto nationalized ten categories of major industries and
withdrew Pakistan from the Commonwealth of Nations and S.E.A.T.O. On
March 1, he introduced extensive land reforms. On July 2, 1972, he
signed the Simla Agreement with India for exchange of the occupied
territories and release of Prisoners of War.
After the 1973 Constitution was promulgated, Bhutto was elected by the House to be the Prime Minister, and he was sworn in on August 14, 1973.
 Father of the Nuclear program
Zulifikar Ali Bhutto was the founder of Pakistan's nuclear programme. In October, 1965, the then-Foreign Minister of Pakistan, Mr. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto visited Vienna when Munir Ahmad Khan
informed him of the status of India's nuclear program and the options
Pakistan had to develop its own nuclear capability. Both agreed on the
need for Pakistan to develop a nuclear deterrent to meet India's
After India's nuclear test on May 1974. Bhutto sensed a great danger for Pakistan. In a press conference held on May, 1974, shortly after India's nuclear test. Prime Minister Bhutto said "even if we have to eat grass, we will make nuclear bombs". On the January 20 of 1972, Prime Minister Bhutto rallied a conference of nuclear scientists and nuclear engineers at Multan. At the Multan Conference, where 283 scientists attended, Prime Minister Bhutto said:" Look, we're going to have the bomb. He asked them "Can you give it to me? And how long will it take it to make a bomb?". The scientists replied: "Oh, yes, yes, You can have it."
There was a lively debate on the time needed to make the bomb, and
finally one scientist dared to say that maybe it could be done in five
years. Prime Minister Bhutto smiled, lifted his hand, and dramatically thrust forward three fingers and said: "Three years, I want it in three years". The atmosphere suddenly became electric. It was then that one of the junior scientist-dr. S.A.Butt (a nuclear chemist), who under Munir Ahmad Khan's
guiding hand would come to play a major role in making the bomb
possible - jumped to his feet and clamoured for his leader's attention.
Dr. S.A Butt Replied: "It can be done in three years". Prime Minister Bhutto was very much amused and he said: "Well,
much as I appreciate your enthusiasm, this is a very serious political
decision, which Pakistan must make, and perhaps all Third World countries must make one day, because it is coming. So can you do it?" And the scientist replied, "Yes, we can do it, given the resources and given the facilities". ”Bhutto's answer was simple, "I shall find you the resources and I shall find you the facilities".
Its militarisation was initiated in January 1972 and, in its initial years, was implemented by General Tikka Khan. The Karachi Nuclear Power Plant was inaugurated by Bhutto during his role as President of Pakistan
at the end of 1972. Long before, as Minister for Fuel, Power and
National Resources, he has played a key role in setting up of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission. Wanting a capable administrator, Bhutto sought Lieutenant General Rahimuddin Khan to chair the commission, which Rahimuddin declined. Instead Prime Minister Bhutto chose a U.S trained nuclear engineer Mr. Munir Ahmad Khan as chairman of Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC), Munir Ahmad Khan was a close friend of his. The Kahuta facility was also established by the Bhutto Administration, and brought under nuclear scientist Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan and the Pakistan Army Corps of Engineers' Lieutenant General Zahid Ali Akbar Khan.
A book written by Maulana Kausar Niazi, a close confidant of Bhutto,
gives a somewhat different perspective. The Atomic Energy commission
officials had misguided Bhutto and he sought on a along journey to try
to get Nuclear fuel reprocessing plant from France. It was on a later
advice of A.Q.Khan that no fuel existed to reprocess, Bhutto tried to
show he was still interested in that expensive route and was relieved
when Kissinger persuaded the French to cancel the deal. By the time
Bhutto was ousted little had been done and Pakistani nukes were
actually made under Zia's era, under the watchful eyes of several
generals including Ishaq Khan.
It has been speculated recently in the press that Qadeer Khan's
uranium enrichment designs were used by the Chinese in exchange for
Uranium Hexafluoride and some weapons grade uranium . Later on this
weapons grade uranium was offered back to the Chinese as the Pakistanis
used their own materials.
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