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Benazir Bhutto-Leader of the PPP-Prime Minister-Operation Midnight Jack

Benazir Bhutto

Benazir Bhutto was the eldest child of former Pakistani prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. After the death of her father, she presided over the Pakistan People Party. She was the first female Prime Minister of Pakistan. She served two times as Prime Minister of Pakistan. 

Early Life

Operation Midnight Jack After her early education in Pakistan, she went to complete her post-secondary studies in the United States. When Benazir Bhutto graduated from Radcliffe in 1973, she enrolled at Harvard University to complete her degree in comparative government. After that, she started studying at Oxford University. She got admission in international law and diplomacy and completed her degree from 1973 to 1977. After that, she joined the PPP (Pakistan People’s Party). 

Leader of the PPP

When Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was arrested in a military coup, she was also in Jail with her mother, “Nusrat Shah.” After the death of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, she was replaced at his father’s position and led the Pakistan People of Pakistan (PPP). In 1981, she started the Restoration of Democracy (MRD) movement with other political parties. 

While her brother Murtaza and Shahnawaz Bhutto founded “Al-Zulfiqar,” a militant group against Zia’s government, in 1981 Al-Zulfiqar hijacked a PIA plane and diverted it towards Kabul and then Damascus. Due to this hijacking, Zia’s government arrested Nusrat and Benazir Bhutto again. In 1984 Zia government released her and sent her to Geneva. Then she moved to England. 

In 1985 when the military coup was lifted, she decided to go back to Pakistan. In 1986 she came back to Pakistan. Millions of people received her in Lahore. After that, she started rallies against the government. Zia’s government again arrested her but released her after some weeks. On 18 December 1987, she married to Asif Ali Zardari. 

Benazir Bhutto First time Prime Minister (1988-1990)

   Benazir Bhutto as Prime Minister

After the death of Zia-ul-Haq, the Supreme court announced the election would be held on a party basis rather than a non-Party basis. In the election, Benazir Bhutto started a huge campaign all over the country. To counter this, the Pakistan military and ISI made a new group against her Islami Jamhoori Ittihad (IJI). Nawaz Sharif led the IJI.

Pakistan People’s Party won 94 seats out of 205 in the National Assembly. IJI got 54 seats only, but they got the government of Punjab. PPP made a collation government with MQM, and Benazir Bhutto was sworn on December 2, 1988. 

After becoming the Prime Minister of Pakistan, she released political Prisoners and lifted the media censorship that Zia’s government imposed. She had not a good relationship with Pakistan Army. The Army Chief Aslam Beg, DG ISI Hamid Gul, and President of Pakistan “Ghulam Ishaq” were against her.

Operation Midnight Jack

ISI made this operation which is called Operation Midnight Jack to assist the no-confidence Movement against Benazir Bhutto. In Operation Midnight Jack , ISI gave money to the parliamentary member for the no-confidence Movement. It couldn’t be successful and got revealed. After investigation, Major Amir was found responsible for all this. In court, Major Amir revealed that it was made to support Nawaz Sharif because he was more acceptable to Pakistan Army.

Dismissal 

In 1990 MQM left the collation government, and then the Benazir government became very unstable. The opposition accused her and her husband of taking kickbacks. Her Husband “Asif Ali Zardari” was known as “Mr. Ten Percent.” After many issues with the Army and President, it wasn’t easy to govern the country. In 1990 Ghulam Ishaq used his power and dismissed Benazir Bhutto’s government. Ghulam Ishaq announced the new election. 

Leader of Opposition

In the 1990 election, PPP won only 45 seats out of 217. The IJI group under Nawaz Sharif won the election and became Prime Minister of Pakistan. From 1990-93 she remained leader of the opposition. 

Benazir bhutto government 1993 (1993-1996)

benazir bhutto government 1993
benazir bhutto government 1993-1996

In 1993, PPP won most parliamentary seats. Benazir Bhutto was re-elected as prime minister. At that time, Farooq Leghari became President of Pakistan. He was the important candidate, and he took Ishaq Khan’s place in the office.

In the 1993 election, his brother won the election from Larkana as an independent candidate. At that time, he was in Syria. Benazir was against him joining the PPP. In November 1998, he came back to Pakistan to start politics. But Benazir Bhutto and his husband, Asif Ali Zardari, were very against it. On arrival in Pakistan, he was arrested and remained in Jail for eight months. 

In 1995 Murtaza Bhutto established his new party Pakistan People Party (Bhutto Shaheed). Nusrat Shah, who was co-chairperson of PPP, supported his son. After this, Benazir Bhutto dismissed her mother from PPP as co-chairperson. Murtaza Bhutto criticized a lot to Asif Ali Zardari and Benazir. He even hung a picture of Asif Ali Zardari in the guest toilet. 

On September 20, 1996, the Karachi police killed Murtaza Bhutto. Murtaza Bhutto’s family blamed Benazir and Asif Ali Zardari for his murder. Benazir Bhutto rejected these allegations, and she blamed President “Farooq Leghari” for Murtaza Bhutto’s murder.

Benazir Bhutto’s government and her husband were involved in corruption. The Economic Situation of the country was very weak. After these situations, President used his power and dismissed the government of Benazir. He announced the new election. In 1997 Nawaz Sharif became the Prime Minister of Pakistan. PPP won only 18 seats in National Assembly.       

After this, Asif Ali Zardari got arrested while he was leaving for Dubai. In April 1999, Benazir Bhutto and Zardari were fined $8.6 million each due to corruption. Bhutto has already arrived in Dubai, and the Dubai’s refused to send her back to Pakistan. So Zardari was the only one who received a punishment.

Benazir bhutto Assassination

benazir bhutto assassination
benazir bhutto assassination

On October 5, 2007, she came back to Pakistan to participate in the General election 2008. During the election campaign on 27-December 2007, she got killed by a gunshot and later by a bomb blast in Liaqat National Bagh Rawalpindi.

 

 

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