Pakistan’s political fraternity has always suffered due to their mistaken stances, lack of integrity and self-exploitation through military establishment.
After the death of Fatima Jinnah, there was no political leader who could lead the nation towards progression. And unfortunately, no one had much popular support among nation either. During the era of Yayha Khan, it was Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, who transformed political dynamics of Pakistan. He established a left centrist political party called “Pakistan Peoples Party”.
Due to it’s “Roti, Kapra, Makaan” campaign and the influential role of Bhutto, west Pakistan inclined itself towards his political party.
The charismatic personality of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto allowed people of Pakistan to understand the essence of true democracy.
The people stood by him and followed his each and every instruction. They even started considering him the sole savior of our nation.
After the separation of East Pakistan, the economy of country was in deplorable conditions. India, was responsible for providing arms and military support to “Mukti Bahni”. They arrested almost 1.2 lacs Pakistani soldiers after the clear defeat in 1971’s war.
According to some historians, Bhutto and the military establishment were responsible for the separation. This was done collectively, when they rejected to accept Mujeeb’s mandate and raised the slogan “Waha Tum, Yahan Hum”. The debate is quite controversial though. Even now a major chunk of Pakistanis still consider Bhutto as hero of the nation.
Let’s discuss his positive influences.
It was Bhutto who lifted the nation morale and motivated people to rise and become a great nation. He was the one who revised Pakistan’s foreign policy. He also established strong ties with Muslim countries across the globe. Along with Moamer Qazzaffi and Shah Faisal, he established the OIC. OIC is a platform for all Muslim countries to discuss critical matters related to the Muslim world, such as Kashmir’s issue, Palestinian – Israel conflicts etc.
There is no doubt that he was a visionary leader, who has been recognized internationally as a charismatic and influential figure of Pakistan.
One of his most important contributions is “Nuclear Assets of Pakistan”. Bhutto played a key role in making Pakistan a nuclear state.
As he was well aware that India had initiated their nuclear program, to survive Pakistan had to maintain nuclear deterrence. Considering this situation, he initiated Pakistan’s nuclear program but unfortunately, he didn’t manage to see it through in his life.
Another contribution of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto is the formulation of constitution of Pakistan. It was the Herculean task to draft constitution in a country like Pakistan where the majority was religiously conservative at that time.
Bhutto had popular support and clear mandate. Despite this, the father of islamization of Pakistan, Zia-ul-haq, sabotaged the constitution to eliminate him. In that time, Pakistan witnessed its darkest era in the form of Zia’s Coup.
Majority of Pakistan’s media and political fraternity established a consensus that Bhutto’s death penalty was a judicial murder.
Many historians and political analysts have given their opinions about the reasons behind this judicial murder. Some of them have written that Bhutto’s pro-nationalist and anti-American policies urged Zia, to overthrow Bhutto’s throne. On the other hand, some also think that Bhutto was involved in the Ahmed Raza Kasuri Murder case and justice prevailed with court’s decision.
We can conclude that after Jinnah, Bhutto was the most popular leader. His charismatic personality and influential speeches will always be considered as hallmarks in Pakistani politics. It is his influence that even today, Pakistan Peoples Party’s third generation cashes his name for the sake of votes by raising the slogans like “Kal bhi Bhutto zinda tha, aaj bhi Bhutto zinda hay”.
Bhutto’s spirit will remain alive. But only if his party follows his left centrist political ideology and focuses on Sindh’s conditions, where they are governing currently. Bhutto will never be happy in his grave, knowing the conditions of interior Sindh, specifically Thar, where people are dying because of the lack of basic needs.