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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

From All India Muslim League to Pakistan Muslim League

Dr. Farid A Malik discusses the complete political history of Pakistan. At first, the ruling party was the All India Muslim League, then it changed to Pakistan Muslim League, and finally to the version that we have today.

The All India Muslim League (AIML) was the founding party of Pakistan. It was under the able and selfless leadership of the Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah that a new country appeared on the globe in 1947.

As the first Governor-General, the Quaid wanted to steer the country and the party in the right direction. Sensing revolt, he walked out of the Executive Committee meeting and severed all links with the new political entity that named itself Pakistan Muslim League (PML). Chaudhry Khaliq-uz-Zaman was elected the first President in place of the Father of the Nation.

Read more: Op-ed: Should Quaid-e-Azam be really frustrated, or delighted, at his 144th birth anniversary?

Since then it has been downhill both for the country and the party. Due to the ‘ Toady’ influences, several heavyweights decided to leave. Hussain Shaheed Suharwardy formed the Awami League which then became the founding party of Bangladesh. The progressive group led by Mian Ifthikaruddin played a key role in forming the left of center National Awami Party.

‘Toadies’ were able to take control of PML together with usurping the goodwill of the founding party of the new land.

Read more: How to cure Pakistan from ‘Toadism’

Political activities during Ayub Khan

In October 1958, when Ayub Khan took control of the country, two leagues emerged. The PML (Convention), led by Chaudhry Khaliq-uz-Zaman, supported the usurper which then conveniently became the ruling party without contesting any elections.

Those who remained behind called themself PML (Council) which was led by Khawaja Nazimuddin. In return for their support, PML (Con) was allowed to operate from Muslim League House located on Davis Road Lahore. Since then several ‘Toady Leagues’ have been incubated from this location, and it has proven to be the ‘Freemasons Lodge of Toadies’.

It is on record that the PML has never prevailed in a free and fair election. In the first credible national elections of 1970, the PML was knocked out of the political arena. Voters in both wings of the country voted against the establishment-supported parties. Only the Jamaat-e-Islami could manage to win four seats mainly because of its religious votes.

Read more: 1970’s general elections: The beginning of the end

In the 1965 Presidential elections, Ayub Khan after shedding his title of Field Marshal contested the elections as a nominee of PML (Con), while Madar-e-Millat Fatima Jinnah was the combined opposition candidate. Despite all the manipulations, the usurper could not prevail in Karachi and the Eastern Wing. He continued in office due to the ‘Toady’ support in Punjab but his invincibility was seriously dented.

In the 1970 credible contest, the Awami League and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) were big winners. In the 1977 elections, the first under the 1973 Constitution, the PPP was clearly the front runner, but the dispute on a few seats caused the collapse of the democratic order. In the 1985 partyless elections which the PPP and other opposition parties boycotted, a new PML (Pagara) emerged. Muhammad Khan Junejo became the Prime Minister while Mian Nawaz Sharif was installed as Chief Minister Punjab.

Read more: Nawaz Sharif’s very own economic model for Pakistan

Mian Sahib face to face with establishment

After Zia’s demise, the elections that followed in December 1988, PPP emerged as the single largest party despite the establishment opposition. In the 1990 elections after the dismissal of the Benazir government, Mian Nawaz Sharif was launched by the establishment at the federal level. Islami Jamhuri Ittehad was cobbled together and then financed by the agencies to push out PPP from the corridors of power.

Once firmly in the saddle both in Punjab and the Centre, Mian Nawaz decided to take on his mentor President Ghulam Ishaq Khan. As a result of this tussle, his government was dismissed in 1993 but the Supreme Court restored it. After this unique comeback, Mian Sahib stood face to face with the establishment. Before this battle for control got out of hand, General Waheed Kakar negotiated a settlement under which both the President and PM had to go home.

Read more: Establishment Nawaz Vs. Establishment Colonial

In 1997, when President Farooq Leghari dismissed the government of his own party, he had no option but to support the PML(N) against the PPP. Riding on this wave Mian Nawaz came into power with an absolute majority. Initially, the President desired across-the-board accountability for which the Ehtesab Bureau was established under Mr. Justice (Retd) Mujahid Mirza. Mr. Justice (Retd) Fakhruddin G. Ibrahim resigned as Law Minister when loan and tax defaulters were allowed to contest elections. First, it was President Ishaq Khan and now it was President Farooq Leghari who sided with the PML(N).

After the elections, President Leghari met the same fate as President Ishaq. Riding on this managed absolute majority, Mian Sahib decided to take on all remaining pillars of power one by one. After the removal of the President, the Supreme Court came under attack and the Chief Justice was removed followed by the resignation of the Army Chief.

The newly handpicked Army Chief decided to strike back when he too was being shown the door. After the October 1999 take over, Mian Nawaz, in order to save his skin, went into self-exile for ten years under an agreement with the General. All the corruption cases against the Sharifs were sent into cold storage. Pervez Musharraf underestimated their wickedness and they managed to stage a comeback.

Read more: Nawaz Sharif Corruption Trial: Should there be a live transmission from Court?

Rise of Imran Khan as a serious political player

The Lawyers’ Movement in 2007 created space for the two mainstream parties. Through a very ill-conceived and short-sighted National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO), both the PML(N) and PPP were allowed to come back and contest elections. Due to the Charter of Democracy signed earlier, the contest was soft. Benazir’s assassination in 2008 brought her party into power at the center while the PML(N) took control of Punjab.

By 2013 Imran Khan emerged as a serious political player as the people were fed up with the corrupt practices of both the PML(N) and the PPP. When their mandate was robbed, the PTI (Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf) decided to protest. IK asked for the opening of four test constituencies which was denied by the PML(N). Stay was granted by the Lahore High Court against the PTI petitions pending in the Election Tribunals.

Read more: Are we finally witnessing a change in Pakistan under PTI?

PTI approached NADRA for a forensic audit of votes. The then Chairman Tariq Malik agreed to conduct the verification of thumb impressions of voters. He was summoned by the CM Punjab where he was asked to go slow. The term used by the Law Minister was ‘Haula Hath (Light hand)’, which the Chairman refused. When he arrived back in Islamabad he was stopped from working.

The Islamabad High Court reinstated him but then personal vendetta was let loose on an upright professional who wanted to do his work as per law. Finally, Tariq Malik left the country to resume his work as an IT Consultant for the United Nations in New York. Now after the term of Usman Mobeen ended as Chairman, Tariq Malik has been reappointed to his previous position.

Read more: Has PM Imran Khan fared well for Pakistan?

Leaving ‘Toadistan’ behind

The elections in 2018  were held under the supervision of the Armed Forces which were conducted very peacefully. In his very first speech as PM, IK offered to open any constituency for verification as desired by the opposition. The exclusion of the infamous Punjab Police made all the difference. There were some complaints of pre-poll rigging through arm twisting by the agencies but only the unscrupulous were affected as the agencies had well-prepared dossiers on their corruption.

AIML did not transform into PML immediately after the Partition in August 1947. When Jinnah left it fell into the ‘Toady Trap’ and lost its overwhelming public support, it then introduced innovative methods like Jhurlu (Vote Stealing) to retain power. Punjab being the ‘Toady Land’ went along with the ‘Toady Circus’ while our Bengali brothers offered resistance.

Read more: Pakistan: The land ruled by ‘Toadies’

The Muslim League House on Davis Road has in fact proven to be a ‘Toady Nursery’ which continues to move Pakistan towards ‘Toadistan’. Like the Freemasons Hall on the Mall, it should be taken over and converted into a museum displaying ‘Toady-ism’.

Now that the Punjab Assembly will be moving into the new building, the historic chamber should be converted into a ‘Toady Circus’ where the coming generations should be educated about this unique phenomenon that has produced sycophants and leeches who occupied these benches to stall change since November 1938.

AIML won the last free and fair election in 1946 while PML has relied on ‘Jhurlus‘. To move forward. Pakistan needs electoral reforms which ‘Jhurlu Parties’ like the PML(N) and PML(Q) cannot afford. Bangladesh is moving towards Pakistan by abandoning the party they themself had created in 1906 at Decca, while we continue to suffer from its leftovers called Pakistan Muslim League which in fact is a ‘Toady League’.

Read more: Is the new Punjab Assembly building another political encroachment?

Lessons must be learned from Bangladesh’s giant leap forward leaving both ‘Toadistan’ and Hindustan behind. Jinnah’s democratic and progressive Pakistan Zindabad, the rest is deplorable and painful.

The writer is Ex-Chairman Pakistan Science Foundation, email: fmaliks@hotmail.com. The article has been republished with the writer’s permission. The views expressed in the article are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.