The list of failures surpasses the achievements. Rule of law, an independent judiciary, respect for fundamental rights, free media, merit-based procedures, and questioning masses are some of the essential features of democracy. Unfortunately, these basic rules have openly violate since independence.
Regimes of Conflicts since independence:1947-56 Absence of constitution, rise of regionalism in Bengal, no strong political party, first 9 years and 11 prime ministers, 1955 dissolution of constitution assembly and Black Doctrine of Necessity.
1956-58: First parliamentary constitution, abrogation of constitution and Martial Law.
1958-69: Ayub’s Martial Law, Presidential System and 1962 constitution, making of Muslim League (Conventional) system of basic democracies, media censorship, but also better economic growth.
1970-77: Fascist civilian rule under Bhutto, agreed 73 constitutions, Bhutto tried to oust military from politics but failed, the poor friendly regime but negative effects of nationalization, Pakistan National Alliance (PNA) and movement against Bhutto derailed democracy. Opposition invited Zia to take over.
1977-88: Zia’s martial law and ban on political activities, making of Majlase Shoora (1982), 8th amendments with Powerful President non party based election 1985, making of pressure groups like MQM, Anjuman Sipahe Sahaba. Restricted women participation in politics.
1988-99: The most corrupt regime of Benezir and dictatorial regime of Nawaz Sharif, dissolution of assembly, rising poverty and decreasing people’s interest in politics.
Role of Army:
The Oath now prescribed for the Members of the Armed Forces as given in the Second Schedule (Article 244) of the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan is as follows:-
“ I-------, do solemnly swear that I will ear true faith and allegiance to Pakistan and uphold the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan which embodies the will of the people, that I will not engage myself in any political activities whatsoever and I will honestly and faithfully serve Pakistan in the Pakistan Army (or Navy or Air Force) as required by and under the law.” The generals maneuvered the circumstances in their favor and implemented such policies which strengthened their illegal hold. Surprisingly, the dictators got ‘cooperative’ Judges and ‘friendly’ politicians to prolong their rule. The army, for all practical purposes, has been and remains in charge. It has steadily increased its power since the first military coup in 1958. The military has a veto over most critical decisions affecting both foreign and security policies, and during the Zia era, it expanded its reach into some areas of domestic politics as well, fomenting, and then containing, ethnic discord in the Sindh and pandering to religious zealots in social policy. Civilian governments in Pakistan are of transient significance. The military, the higher echelons of the civil service, and the intelligence services are the permanent features of the state. There is little or no evidence that the civilian government has any meaningful autonomy.
Ayub had a political party, the Convention Muslim League, just as Zia enjoys the support of Majlase Shoora and Musharraf has his Quaid-i-Azam MuslimLeague. The system of basic democracy and local government created a new supporting class for the generals. Ironically, geo strategic situations always benfitted the dictators.
GeneralAyub got US assistance due to cold war, General Zia was favoured due to Soviet invasion of Afghanistan (1979), lastly General Mushraf was bestowed due to front line state....