11 May

First Eleven Years (1947-1958)

  • Pakistan won independence under extremely difficult conditions. The next task was setting up a new state.
  • There was no administrative structure. Riots, refugee's problems and economic pressures were challenging for the new state.
  • Negative attitude from the Indian government and the war on Kashmir created problems in relations with India.
  • The Government of India Act 1935 was adopted as the first Interim Constitution. Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah became the first Governor General (GG) of Pakistan and Liaquat Ali Khan, the first PM.

Governor Generals :

1. M. A. Jinnah August       Sept. 1947-Sept. 1948

2. Kh. Nazim Uddin             Sept. 1948-Oct 1951

3. Ghulam Mohammad      Oct, 1951-Oct. 1955

4. Iskandar Mirza                Oct. 1955-March 1956

Prime Ministers

1. Liaquat Ali Khan      August 1947-0ct 1951

2. Kh. Nazim Uddin     Oct. 1951-April 1953

3. Muhammad Ali Bogra 

a. April 1953-Oct 1954

b. 1954-August 1955

4. Ch. Muhammad Ali     August 1955-Sept 1956

5. H.S. Suhrawardy          Sept. 1956-Oct 1957

6. I.I. Chundrigar              Oct. 1957-Dec 1957

7. Firoz Khan Noon          Dec. 1957-0ct. 1958

Major Issues

  • Constitution-making
  • Elections at the provincial level
  1. Punjab, NWFP 1951
  2. Sindh 1953
  3. East Bengal 1954
  • The 1st Constituent Assembly (CA) was dissolved and the 2nd CA was constituted in 1955.
  • One Unit Scheme October 1955
  • Economic management, Agriculture, Industrialization and Education was a question dealt in ls t Five Year Plan.
  • Political Instability was there. Weak and short-lived governments shattered the whole political system.
  • Decline of Political Parties created bad names for politicians.
  • Instability was also there a t the provincial level.

Second Phase (1958-69)

Martial Law remained imposed from October 1958 to June 1962. Constitutional Rule was restored in June 1962 and remained till the 2nd Martial Law in March 1969. 

Ayoub Khan took over as Chief Martial Law Administrator (CMLA) and the President. He got himself elected through referendum in 1960 and re-elected in January 1965 through presidential elections.

Important Policy Measures

Important Policy Measures taken by the Ayoub government were:

  • Administrative Reforms which included removal of unwanted officials, some 1662 in number.
  • Restrictions on political activities. Political leaders were stopped from taking part in politics for 6 years on the charge of corruption and other charges under the law named EBDO.
  • Economic planning was done for industrial development and the Green Revolution.
  • Educational Reforms
  • The Constitution was introduced.

Downfall of Ayoub Khan

  • The Indo-Pakistan war started and at the end of war Tashkent Pact was signed with India. People were not satisfied with this pact. They also resented the election results of 1965.
  • Fruits of economic development were not distributed at masses level. Wealth of the nation was concentrated in a few hands. This brought people to agitation and public demand resulted in the resignation of the president.

AYOUB ML AND MILITARY INTERVENTION (Oct 7, 1958 – Jun 8,1962 - Nov 1968)

Oct 1957, Iskandar Mirza dismissed Suhrawardy appointed I.I Chundrigar as PM on December 16, 1957, Malik Feroz Khan Noon took over the office of Prime Minister from Chundrigar. President Iskandar Mirza was distressed by the alliance of Suhrawardy and Noon. 

ML imposed on Oct 07, 1958. Ayoub started his ML with wide support in the masses

  • A proper constitution was needed
  • Land reforms to eliminate landlords authority
  • Refugees rehabilitation
  • Educational and legal reforms
  • Capital to be reconstructed 
  • Independence foreign policy


  • Many commissions were set up 
  • Smugglers and black marketer were rounded up
  1. Elective Bodies Disqualification Order (EBDO)
  2. Public Ordinance Disqualification Order

Economic Development

  • Pushed industrialization program 
  • Significant increase in per capita income
  • Well professional five-year plans 

Land/ Agrarian Reforms

  • Absentee lords exploited the poor

1. Land Reform Commission Oct 1958

Reduction of land ceiling irrigated land to 500 acres and irrigated to 1000 acres

Resumed land to offer to existing tenant

2. Consolidation policy to exchange fragmented policy

3. Mangala, Terbela and Warsak dam established

4. Extensive programs of tube wells

5. Easy loans through Agricultural Development Corporation and Agricultural Bank 

Industrial Reforms 

  • Gradual Liberalization of economy
    1. Price mechanism
    2. Incentive to traders
  • Investment procedure simplified
  • A bonus voucher scheme
  1. Exporter of certain goods given import license equivalent to 30% of exports
  • NIT established
  • RCD- Iran, Pakistan, Turkey established
  • 1959 Basic Democracy -system of local self government



1. Administrative

2. Developmental

3. Local Self Government

4. Constitutional 

BD Organizations (4 tiers)

1. Union Councils

a. Composition 10 member elected by 10 constituencies of 1000 people each & Five nominated members with a paid secretary

b. Functions maintenance of roads, sanitation, water supply, local disputes

C. Finance UC could levy taxes & Ad hoc govt grant

2. Tehsil Councils / Thana Council

a. Composition all the chairmen of UC and TC & officials and non officials nominated by DC headed by Sub divisional Officer or Tehsildar

b. Functions coordination and discussion forum

c. Finance No taxation power, Govt adhoc grant (Municipal Committees could levy taxes)

3. District Councils

a. Composition half elected members (by chairmen UC) and half nominated(service provider dept.) DC as a chairman

b. Function coordination between service providers, coordination, develop schemes, review of progress, policy making

c. Finance levy taxes - land, professional & Adhoc grants

4. Divisional Councils

a. Composition elected members from MCs & elected from District councils, other half nominated

b. Functions coordination, review progress

c. Finance no finance needed, ad hoc grant

5. Municipal Corporations

a. Only for big cities like Lahore and Karachi

Constitutional Changes

  • 1962 Constitution 
  • Change of Capital

Social Reforms

  • Family Law ordinance 1961
  1. Polygamy prohibited or in special circumstance with approval of first wife
  2. To give divorce one must go through reconciliatory process of UCs
  • Family planning policy 
  1. Population control
  2. Family Planning centers
  • Rehabilitation of Refugees
  • 9 million refugees
  1. Appointed Gen. M Azam Khan as Rehabilitation Ministers

Education reforms

  • Commission recommended
  1. 3 years degree program
  2. Primary education free
  3. Middle compulsory
  • Students agitated
  • Gov't withdrew 3 year degree program

Indo Pak war 1965

Run of Kutch


Tashkent Declaration (Jan 1966)

The Tashkent Declaration was signed between India and Pakistan on 10 January 1966 to resolve the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965.


  • Economic policies
  1. Widening the gap (disparity)
  2. Diverting resources of east Pakistan
  3. Sharp rise in Population growth
  4. People demanded equal distribution of resources
  • East Pakistan not happy on 1962 Constitution
  • Preference of east Pak by international development institutions
  • No health care and sanitation
  • Labor union protests (Mar 1969)
  • Tashkent declaration
  • EBDO
  • Ayoub family flagrant indulgence in corruption
  • ZA Bhutto launched PPP in Nov 1967


Ayoub Khan handed over power to Army Chief Yahya Khan. He imposed Martial Law and the1962 Constitution was abrogated. He took some immediate steps:

  • Removal of officers 303
  • Provinces Revived: March 30, 1970
  • Abolition of Parity
  • Legal Framework Order (LFO) as interim law issued in March 1970 which provided basic principles for
  • Constitution making
  • Rules and regulations for elections
  • Seats in the assemblies
  • National Assembly 313 (300 plus 13 women seats)

> For EastPak 162 plus 7

West Pak 138 plus 6

General Elections

Awami League General Elections were held in December 1970. Election Results were:

  1. Awami league                   160 general seats
  2. Pakistan People's Party      81 general seats

 Transfer of power became a major problem. Failure of dialogue for transfer of Power among three top leaders led to confrontation and military action on March 25, 1971. It ultimately resulted in Civil war and alienation of East Pakistan India played a very negative role. It attacked on East Pakistan and India-Pakistan war started which ended with the separation of East Pakistan.



Z. A. Bhutto assumed power on December 20, 1971. First he became President of Pakistan and also the first civilian Chief Martial Law Administrator.

Major Policies

The first task was the Constitution making. In 1972 Interim Constitution was adopted and then the Parliament of Pakistan unanimously adopted the 1973 Constitution.

The major policy of Mr. Bhutto was Nationalization. His government nationalized:

  • Key industries like Iron & Steel, Basic metals, heavy engineering, heavy electrical, Motor Vehicles & Tractors, Heavy & Basic Chemicals, Petro-Chemicals, Cement, Gas, Oil Refinery etc.
  • Life Insurance in 1972
  • Banks in 1974
  • Schools and Colleges in 1972. New University Ordinance was issued in 1973.
  • Managing and sub-agencies were abolished.

1. Labour Policy

A new Labour Policy was announced in which more rights and concessions were given to the working classes.

2. Health Policy

Under the new Health Policy, cheap medicine and facilities were promised to the masses.

3. Administrative Reforms

Administrative Reforms were introduced to eradicate corruption in the country. Hundreds of civil servants were removed on the charge of corruption.

4.Problems of Reforms:

Reforms were good in outlook but as their results were not according to the expectations of the masses. Discontentment took the place of initial optimism.

1977 Elections and Agitation:

As a result of the elections of 1977 PPP won the elections. But the joint opposition blamed a mass rigging the election results. They demanded fresh elections. Bhutto initially was stubborn but later showed inclination to compromise but history has taken a U-turn. As he refused to negotiate with the elected majority party in 1971, the opposition refused to compromise and took the case to the streets. Urban shopkeepers, businessmen, students, women and even the intelligentsia joined hands against the government. The result was the third Martial Law and the end of democracy.


1. Islamic provisions in Cons 1973

2. Ahmadis declared non - Muslim in 1974

3. OIC summit 1974

4. Red cross to red crescent

5. Holy Quran in Hotels

6. Ministry of religious affairs established

7. Sponsored international conference on the life of Hazrat Muhammad (SAW)

8. Visits of Imam e Kaaba and Madina

9. Friday declared as weekly holiday


Chief of Army Staff General Mohammad Zia-ul-Haq took over and imposed Martial Law. He suspended the constitution. It was the longest military Rule in the history of Pakistan. To justify his rule Zia-ul-Haq presented his Agenda about:

  • Effective Administration
  • Islamization
  • Return to Democracy

Major Policies:

Zia-ul-Haq promised Elections first within 90 days, and then extended this period after the reforms. These reforms included:

  1. Accountability of the ousted regime;
  2. Restrictions imposed on political activities and press.


In his way of Islamization of the system he introduced many steps for forging cooperation of some Islamic groups.

He also introduced Constitutional and legal changes to emphasis on Islamic values in the society. He established:

  • Shariat benches established in 1979;
  • Federal Shariat Court was established in 1981:
  • Introduced Islamic Punishments;
  • Amputation of hands, Stoning to death and lashing etc;
  • Interest free banking initiated in 1981 on the principle of profit & loss sharing:
  • Zakat deducted on saving accounts & investments;
  • Usher was imposed on agricutural produce in 1983;
  • New education Policy with Islamic character of syllabus along with Pakistan Studies and Islamiat is compulsory for all the classes up to graduation.
  • Islamization of Mass media;
  • Prayers break was introduced in offices, and Mohalla Salat Committees were formed to observe the compliance of Prayer Ordinance;
  • Pakistan Bait-ul-Mal was established.

Return to democracy

In order to return to democracy Zia-ul-Haq took the following measure:

  • Local Bodies elections, 1979.
  • Referendum was held to elect Zia-ul-Haq as president for next five years in December1984.
  • Then he held elections on a non-party basis in February 1985.
  • New National Assembly (NA) was formed and a Civilian government was installed.
  • Revival of the Constitution Order March 1985 with the most controversial 8th Constitutional Amendment was introduced.
  • Withdrawal of martial law, Dec 30, 1985.

1985-1999 Civilian Rule

Democracy was restored but no civilian government could complete its tenure of five years and became the victim of 58-2B of 8th amendment by virtue of that the President can dissolve NA and dismiss the elected government.

1. Junejo March 1985-May 1988

2. Benazir Bhutto November 1988-Aug 1990

3. Nawaz Sharif October 1990-July 1993

4. Benazir Bhutto October 1993-November 1996

5. Nawaz Sharif February 1997-October 1999

Interim Prime Ministers appointed for holding fair elections were

1. Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi: August-November 1990

2. Bulkh Sher Mazari: April-May 1993

3. Dr. Moeen Qureshi: July-October 1993

4. Malik Meraj Khalid: November 1996-February 1997

Civilian government adopted policies for the welfare and betterment of the people but their effects were compromised due to several reasons:

Problem of keeping coalitions intact;

Weak political parties, which weakened the government;

Greater confrontation;

Complaints of corruption and misuse of state resources.


In 1999 again Military Rule was imposed against the civilian government's attempt to concentrate power in the office of Prime Minister. The Nawaz government introduced political and constitutional changes to have a complete control on all branches of the government.

The Nawaz government's attempt to remove the Army Chief, while he was out of the country and returning from his visit to Sri Lanka, proved counter productive. General Musharraf took over as the Chief Executive of the country and suspended the constitution. Martial law was not declared. No military courts were established. Political and press freedoms remained intact.

General Musharraf announced his Political Priorities:

1. Rebuild national confidence and morale;

2. Strengthening federation;

3. Remove inter provincial disharnmony;

4. Revival of the economy and restoration of investor's confidence;

5. Improving Law and order situation and dispensation of Justice;

6. Depoliticize the state institutions and devolution of power;

7. Swift and across the board accountability.

General Musharraf designed the following policies to achieve these goals:

Accountability and return of looted wealth of the state:

Revival of the economy through increasing Foreign exchange reducing International debt burden through rescheduling;

Poverty Reduction and social uplift.

General Musharraf introduced the New Local Bodies System, delegation of power to the district government.

In the process of Return to Democracy he held:

  • Referendum, April 2002.
  • Introduced Legal Framework Order (LFO) 2002
  • Held General Elections of National And Provincial Assemblies Oct 2002.
* The email will not be published on the website.