Death Knell for a Champ

Is the PPP headed to­wards ex­tinc­tion? If it con­tin­ues with its present lead­er­ship and does not change its ways, the time is not far when there will be no PPP to talk about.

Southasia - - COVER STORY - By Sha­keel Fa­rooqui

Fol­low­ing sharp dif­fer­ences on the Tashkent Dec­la­ra­tion, Zul­fikar Ali Bhutto ( ZAB) re­signed from the Ayub cab­i­net in 1966 to be­gin an in­de­pen­dent po­lit­i­cal ca­reer, emerg­ing as the most pop­u­lar demo­cratic leader in Pak­istan’s his­tory. He was un­doubt­edly ‘Quaid-i-Awam,‘ the leader of the masses. His pop­u­lar­ity in the Mus­lim ummah and the his­toric suc­cess of the Is­lamic Sum­mit in La­hore, which was at­tended by many head of Mus­lim states, es­tab­lished him as the undis­puted leader of the Mus­lim world. Nat­u­rally, when the west saw a ge­nius like Bhutto all set to lead the ummah, alarm bells started ring­ing in western cap­i­tals and he was fi­nally elim­i­nated from the scene.

Af­ter the death of ZAB, his wife Nus­rat Bhutto very bravely con­fronted the dic­ta­tor­ship of Gen. Zi­aul Haq, of course with the sup­port of her daugh­ter Be­nazir Bhutto (BB). Un­for­tu­nately both the sons of ZAB were also killed, leav­ing the el­dest daugh­ter to hold the reins of the party and she very suc­cess­fully man­aged to be­come the Prime Min­is­ter of the coun­try twice. While she was all set for her third vic­tory, she was killed on De­cem­ber 27, 2007, at Li­aquat Bagh in Rawalpindi. Her death shat­tered the party.

But it the un­timely death of BB brought back PPP to power and the com­mand of the party was shifted from the Bhutto dy­nasty to Asif Ali Zar­dari, com­pletely chang­ing the com­plex­ion of the party. With a shrewd move and the slo­gan of ‘Pak­istan Khappey,’ Asif man­aged to be­come the Pres­i­dent of Pak­istan by dis­lodg­ing Gen. Mushar­raf. His ap­par­ent emer­gence as the cham­pion of rec­on­cil­i­a­tion was in fact a move to open the gates of cor­rup­tion for all and sundry, slow­ing the process of progress in the coun­try. This was fur­ther ag­gra­vated by the power cri­sis which se­verely af­fected the econ­omy of Pak­istan. The dev­as­tat­ing short­age

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