Benazir BhuttoBenazir Bhutto was born on June 21 1953 in Karachi Pakistan

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Benazir BhuttoBenazir Bhutto was born on June 21, 1953, in Karachi, Pakistan, the eldest child of former premier Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. After completing her early education in Pakistan, she pursued her higher education in the United States. Bhutto attended Radcliffe College from 1969 to 1973, and then enrolled at Harvard University, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in comparative government. It was then onto the United Kingdom, where she studied at Oxford University from 1973 to 1977, completing a course in international law and diplomacy.There are number of factors which contributed to the emergence of Benazir Bhutto as a leader in Pakistan. Infact, the political legacy of her family, charismatic leadership of her father Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto followed by his controversial execution, created many influences on Benazir Bhutto’s political grooming. After the execution of Z.A. Bhutto, his daughter Benazir Bhutto experienced prison and exile, however, she could not remain aloof from political arena of Pakistan. Alongside these events, her educational background at Radcliffe and Oxford University also groomed her leadership and personality. For that reason, Benazir Bhutto not only attended and received foreign delegations and leaders during Bhutto reign in Pakistan in early 1970s but also she accompanied her father, Z.A. Bhutto, on foreign official tours. This association and experience of politics, with her father, chiseled the political insight of Benazir Bhutto. After the execution of her father, she became the leader of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the ray of hope and aspirations for Pakistani masses.In February 1981, she formally established the Movement for the Restoration of Democracy (MRD), a group that brought together the PPP with other political parties in the country. The MRD called for a four-point programme: an end to martial law, the restoration of the 1973 constitution, parliamentary elections, and the transfer of political power from the military to the elected representatives.She moved to England in 1984, becoming the leader in exile of the PPP, then returned to Pakistan on April 10, 1986, to launch a nationwide campaign for open elections. She married a wealthy landowner, Asif Ali Zardari, in Karachi on December 18, 1987. Bhutto was aware that being married gave her an image of respectability which would improve her chances of being elected. Despite some difficulties, Bhutto led the PPP to victory in the election, taking 93 of the 205 contested seats.Benazir wanted to repeal the Eighth Amendment in order to strengthen her position as prime minister but soon abandoned the effort. Benazir also faced not only the old problems of the political role of the military forces, the division of power between the central and provincial governments, and the role of Islam, but also pressing new ones, including a large budget deficit and growing ethnic violence. However, she managed to cope with these difficulties and tried to resolve them as soon as possible. She appointed herself as the new treasury minister, with her mother as a senior minister and her father-in-law as chairman of the parliamentary public accounts committee. The country’s three most powerful figures—the army chief Aslam Beg, the ISI chief Hamid Gul, and President Khan—all had contempt for her family. She released many political prisoner who were arrested by Martial Law regime under Gen. Zia. She also removed some restrictions on media as well as re-instated those Government servants who were removed by Gen. Zia on political grounds.The country also faced a growing problem with the illegal narcotics trade, with Pakistan being among the world’s largest heroin exporters and the drug’s use rapidly increasing domestically. Bhutto pledged that she would take tough action on the powerful drug barons.During her first premiership, Bhutto went on a number of foreign trips, enhancing her image as the first female Prime Minister in the Islamic world. She also made efforts to cultivate good relationships with the leaders of Islamic countries. In 1989, she attended the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Kuala Lumpur, where Pakistan was re-admitted to the Commonwealth of Nations. Benazir took the office in the crucial decade of Cold war. During her first government, Benazir Bhutto’s foreign policy revolved around Afghanistan, India, and the United States. As Premier, Bhutto was reluctant to challenge the ISI’s support for the Islamist mujahideen forces in Afghanistan which were then engaged in a civil war against the country’s government. Bhutto initially attempted to improve relations with neighbouring India. She invited Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and his wife Sonia as her guests for a three-day visit in Islamabad following the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation summit. Rajiv returned on a bilateral visit six months later. She pleased him by revoking Zia’s offer of the Nishan-e-Pakistan award to the former Indian leader Morarji Desai. The two countries agreed to reduce their military levels along the border and agreed not to attack their respective nuclear installations. After accusations of being too conciliatory towards India, Bhutto took a harder line against them, particularly on the Kashmir conflict. Amid growing Kashmiri protests against Indian rule, in interviews Bhutto expressed support for the Kashmiri Muslim community. She called on the United Nations to oversee the Kashmir plebiscite originally promised in 1948. In January 1990, Indian police opened fire on a pro-independence rally in Kashmir, killing fifty and flaming tensions in the region. Bhutto visited a training camp for pro-independence Kashmiri militants on the Pakistani side of the border and pledged $5 million for their cause; she followed this with further statements in support of the militant groups. In one speech, she incited Kashmiri Muslims to rise up against their administration.During her first time, Benazir Bhutto established the separate but integrated nuclear testing programme in the atomic bomb programme, thus establishing a nuclear testing programme where the authorizations were required by the Prime minister and the military leadership. Benazir Bhutto undertook the supervision of the project, Integrated research programme (IRP) a missile programme which remained under Benazir Bhutto’s watch and successfully ended in 1996. Pakistan’s first military satellite, Badr-I was also launched under her government through China. She declared the “1990”, a year of space in Pakistan.In addition to the violence in Sindh and elsewhere, she had to cope with increasing charges of corruption directed not only at her associates, but at her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, and father-in-law. On the international front, Pakistan was facing serious threats from India over Kashmir and problems associated with the unresolved Afghan war. In November 1990, after a long political battle, Khan finally used the Eighth Amendment to dismiss Benazir Bhutto’s government following charges of corruption, nepotism, and despotism. Khan soon called for new elections in 1990 where Bhutto conceded her defeat.Links:•••••• Rana Liaquat Ali KhanBegum Raana Liaquat Ali Khan was one of the leading woman and prominent figure in the Pakistan movement along with her husband who not only witness the creation of Pakistan but also give her services to new born Pakistan. She was the radical lady with new thoughts and ideas who was always ready to give her 100% whatever the situation was.Begum Raana Liaquat Ali Khan was born on 13th of February 1905 in Almora. She got her early education at Wellesley Girls High School and then moved to IssabelaThoburn College. Later she got her B.A economics degree from University of Lucknow in 1927; she did her Masters in science with economics and Sociology.She began her career as a teacher in the Gokhale Memorial School after completing the Teachers Diploma Course from the Diocesan College, Calcutta. After her Master’s degree, Raana was appointed as Professor of Economics in the Indraprastha College University, of New Delhi in 1931.She met Liaqat Ali Khan when he came there to deliver a lecture on Law and Justice at the Indraprastha College University in 1931. In December 1932, she got married to Liaquat Ali Khan after embracing Islam. She changed her name from Sheila Irene Pant to Raana Liaquat Ali Khan. With her husband, Raana strongly opposed the Simon Commission. Raana proved to be Liaquat Ali Khan’s constant partner and companion. She became politically involved with her husband and played a major role in Pakistan Movement. She became a defining moment in Pakistan’s history when she accompanied her husband to London, United Kingdom in May 1933. There, she and Khan met with Jinnah at Hamstead Heath residence and successfully convinced Jinnah to return to British Indian Empire to resume the Leadership of All India Muslim League. Jinnah returned to India, and Ra’ana was appointed as executive member of Muslim League and Chairperson of Economic Division of the Party.Begum Ra’ana played an important role in creating political awareness among women. Ra’ana was among the aspiring women in South Asia and encouraged hundreds of women to fight for Pakistan shoulder-to-shoulder with men. Ra’ana was the first First Lady of Pakistan. As First Lady, she initiated reforms for woman and child development and social progress of women, and played a major role for women’s part in Pakistan’s politics. After the assassination of her husband Liaquat Ali Khan in 1951, Begum Ra’ana continued her services for the social and economic benefit of women of Pakistan till her death in 1990. One of the daunting challenges for her was to organise health services for women and children migrating from India to Pakistan. In 1947, as the refugees poured in from across the border, amidst the most pitiable of conditions with cholera, diarrhoea and smallpox being common sights everywhere, she called upon women to come forward and collect food and medical supplies from government offices. Begum Liaquat asked the army to train women to give injections and first aid. The Pakistan Army quickly established Army Medical Corps and recruited a large number of women nurses as army nurses. During this period, girls were also personally encouraged by Begum Liaquat to take up nursing as a profession. Later on, Begum Raana Liaquat Ali formed the Women National Guards and she was awarded with a rank of Brigadier. With the help of her best friend Kay Miles, she established a home for abducted women, an unemployment bureau, a lost and found bureau, widow’s home and other volunteer services. She opened a cottage industries’ shop to encourage women and migrant craftsmen to generate an income. She also flourished the Gul-e-Raana Nusrat Industrial home for women. She established All Pakistan Women’s Association (APWA) and affiliated with United Nations. She also setup many Institutions in Karachi like Home Economics College for Girls and the professional and business women club and Hostel.After her husband death, Raana went onto start her career as stateswoman that lasted more than 2 decades. In 1952, Raana was the first Muslim woman delegate to the United Nations in 1952. In 1954, Government of Pakistan had appointed her as Pakistan Ambassador to the Netherlands, and also was the first woman ambassador of Pakistan. In June 1966, she was appointed as Pakistan Ambassador to Italy and stayed there until 1965. Later, she was directed to Tunisia as Pakistan Ambasaddor to Tunisia and held this position until March 1966. Following her return to Pakistan, Raana joined Rana Liaquat Ali Khan Government College of Home Economics as Professor of Economics and stayed there until 1973. In 1972, as Pakistan was dismembered and going through an intense crisis, Ra’ana joined hands with then-President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and his political movement, and joined the socialist government of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Ra’ana was part of Bhutto’s Ministry of Finance and Economics and played a major and influential role in decisions being made concerning economics. Bhutto encouraged her to participate in upcoming elections, and won elections of 1973. Ra’ana was the first woman governor of the province of Sindh and the first Chancellor of Sindh University and Karachi University.Begum Liaquat died on June 13, 1990 and was buried next to her husband in the Quaid-e-Azam Mausoleum. With her has ended a historic period for the women and youth of Pakistan whose, future generations, would seek inspiration from Begum Liaquat’s life and contributions to the emancipation of women.Rana is considered one of the greatest female leaders Pakistan has produced. In Pakistan, she is given titled as “Mother of Pakistan” received in 1950. Rana continues to be seen as a symbol of selfless service to the cause of humanity and uplift of women. In recognition of her life-long struggle for women’s rights, she was awarded the United Nation’s Human Rights Award in 1978. Her other many awards and medals include the “Jane Adam’s Medal” in 1950, Woman of Achievement Medal 1950, Mother of Pakistan in 1950, Nishan-i-Imtiaz in 1959, Grand Cross of Orange Nassau in 1961 (the Netherlands), International Gimbel Award 1962, Woman of the World in 1965 chosen by the Turkish Women’s Association, Ankara and Vavaliera di Gran Croce in 1966 (Italy). She has given her hard and painstaking work for the cause of Pakistan till her last breath and became inspirational personality for women.Links 1) Begum Shaista Ikramullah Begum Shaista Suhrawardy Ikramullah was a Pakistani Bengali politician, diplomat and author. She studied at Loreto College, Kolkata. She was also the first Muslim woman to earn a PhD from the University of London. Her doctorate thesis, “Development of the Urdu Novel and Short Story””