5th July, Black Day of history


Muhammad Aslam Awan
On 5 th July 1977 General Zia-ul-Haq toppled the democratic Government of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, who
was the elected and legitimate Prime Minister of Pakistan. Z.A. Bhutto as Prime Minister of Pakistan
gave the country a constitution, which was enacted with concerted efforts of all political parties of
Pakistan. Zia-ul-Haq ‘in fact’ had violated the sacred constitution of Pakistan and not only derailed
Pakistan from democratic track but put the ever weak cart of the country on the bumpy road, leading to
dark destination. Z.A. Bhutto was the most popular leader of the country, worst enemies of Bhutto
despite all the differences with him could not find a single clue of corruption against him and failed in
leveling charges of corruption, despite their hectic efforts to malign him. His re-election as PM and the
sweeping victory of PPP made it undisputedly clear that Z.A. Bhutto had deep roots in the hearts of poor
masses and they were united to travel the long route under the charismatic leadership of Bhutto.
Pakistan National Alliance could not withstand before the popularity of Bhutto and PNA was not ready
to accept the election results. PNA started a protest against Bhutto, being in league with the veiled
forces of the country. Z.A. Bhutto adopted the democratic way of dialogue. Maulana Kausar Niazi and

Abdul Hafeez Peerzada under the leadership of Z.A. Bhutto and Professor Ghafoor Ahmad and Nawab
Zada Nasar-Ullah-Khan under the leadership of Mufti Mahmood had several sessions of dialogue and
they were almost agreed to conclude a treaty, final consultation with Z.A. Bhutto and Mufti Mehmood
was underway and after their approval a unanimous treaty had to come into effect and PNA had to quit
the way of protests. Zia-ul-Haq being afraid of the conclusion of a pact between Z.A. Bhutto and PNA
had a vigilant eye on the dialogue process. Zia ul Haq was desirous to fish out of troubled waters. When
he came to know that both the parties have reached a treaty and anytime it will come into effect, he
surreptitiously walked into the power corridors and took over as Chief Martial Law administrator,
declared the constitution null and void and imposed his despotic rule over the country. Sources say the
Asghar Khan was behind the whole maneuvering against democracy. It is interesting to note that
Professor Ghafoor Ahmad, later on, commented that third Martial Law was imposed surreptitiously on
the fate of the country. Zia ul Haq sworn in that he would manage and execute elections in the country
within 90 days but later on he repudiated his own will and pledge and prolonged his despotic rule for
eleven long years. With the assumption of power, Bhutto had put the country on right track of progress.
He had to face a lot of national issues. Economy of the country had been totally destroyed by the
adventurists, playing havoc with the fate of the nation. Fall of Dhaka was a severe blow to the
integration, sovereignty and progress of nascent State. Hostile forces succeeded in segregation of
Pakistan in two parts, and their cherished motive came to be realized. India Gandhi shouted with joy, we
have vindicated the Muslims for one thousand years of their rule over India. PNA boycotted the
Provincial Assembly elections and polling stations remained empty whole day. PNA protests were fired
at by the Government. Dozens of people were shot dead and as a result partial martial law was imposed
in Karachi, Lahore and Hyderabad. PNA adopted a strategy, to reinvigorate its protest, naming its
movement as Tehreek-e-Nizame Mustafa. PNA stirred the public sentiments under the guise of Tehreek-
e-Nizame Mustafa and moved the people to attend its street processions. In May Government and PNA
agreed to hold talks to find a way to ease tensions between them. It was agreed that under the interim
set up elections will be held in the coming October. In the meantime Air Marshal Asghar Khan sent a
letter to Generals to assume power in the larger national interest. Air Martial Asghar Khan sabotaged
the pact between Government and PNA and facilitated General Zia to assume power illegally. In his
reign Bhutto endeavored hard to change the destiny of the country. He executed land reforms in the
country. Health and food facilities were made accessible to the common man. Transport Policy was
executed to facilitate the poor community of the country. He introduced the identity card system for the
ease and distinction of common man, to facilitate the citizens in day to day official matters. He declared
the 5 th February will be observed as Kashmir day. He was the pioneer of the initiative to bring the third
world countries closer, to make them a third power. He brought back the 90,000 war captives alongwith
a vast territory occupied by India. He declared the Qadiani’s, Kafir, which is his remarkable achievement.
Due to his endeavors for the renaissance, resurgence, resurrection of Islam and make the Muslim block,
the world powers conspired to remove him physically from the scene and General Zia moved forward to
execute the foreign agenda and toppled Bhutto and finally finished him physically. With the judicial
murder of Bhutto the chapter of incessant struggle for renaissance, resurgence, resurrection of Islam
was closed.