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Authors: Zakir Abbasi, Mohammad
Keywords: Political Science
Issue Date: 2015
Series/Report no.: ;3823
Abstract: Since its inception, Pakistan had been experiencing the dysfunctionalism of different types of political system. Despite emerging through a democratic process on the World map in 1947, under an inherited British system of governance, it could not sustain the rule of law. Lack of devoted political leadership and growing political and economic incompetence, under the patronage of non-political opportunists, had debarred the growth of a capable political system which caused for military-bureaucratic institutionalization in political process. The British political system of India Act 1935, martial-democratic system to General Ayub Khan‟s basic democracy, parliamentary system of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto‟s Islamic-socialism and the presidentio-parlia-military system of General Zia-ul-Haq had been equally responsible for political decay in Pakistan. Meanwhile, Pakistan had gone through the ever deadliest event of its dismemberment in 1971 but still, its leadership could not learn enough to practice the politics of devotion, cooperation and national self-esteem. Repeated martial-laws and ineffective democracies had hampered the political participation of the public in the political process and the performance of the political system. The accidental death of General Zia-ul-Haq in 1988 provided a chance for a democratic polity but, the politics of immaturity, revenge and corruption had broken the dreams of political stability in the country. The political system, working under 8th amendment of the constitution with extensive military involvement in poltical process, caused for distrust between the head of the state and the heads of governments. Consequently, none of the elected governments of Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif could be able to complete their constitutional term from 1988-99. Military, as an organized and disciplined institution in the country, had not been ready to lose its political role and had taken the opportunity for takeover, provided by the elected leadership, in 1999. Thus, the sub-system involvement across the boundaries caused for another political decay. Generally, the politically desperated people of Pakistan discuss and criticize the political system and their leadership in everyday sittings but they have a little awareness of the basic political structures and their proper functional procedure. The present study, “Political development and decay in Pakistan: 1988-2008” is primarily, an attempt to examine the functional capabilities of the political systems, experienced during the period of study, in accordance with their structures. It also expects to provide sufficient knowledge for a common man to understand the political process for an effective political participation in general, and to encourage for further scholarly researches to evolve a viable political system in Pakistan, in particular.
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