Tag Archives: Yousaf Raza Gillani

Now India and Pakistan Can Get Down to Business

High-level talks in February, billed by some as a failure, actually set the stage for progress.

WSJ Op-ed by Najam Sethi, 07 March 2010
On initial appearances, the first high-level bilateral talks between India and Pakistan since November 2008 weren’t a success. When the two foreign secretaries convened in New Delhi on Feb. 25, at times it was as if they were at different meetings. The Indians tried to focus on terrorism sponsored from within Pakistan, while the Pakistanis wanted a broader dialogue. In the end, there was no noteworthy result. But appearances in this case are deceiving. This meeting is likely to prove more successful than many expect.
That’s because interests on both sides are at last correctly aligned to give talks a shot at success. For India, it has been a matter of reaching several conclusions at the same time. First, New Delhi has failed to browbeat Islamabad into steps like cracking down on Lashkar-e-Taiba, the terrorist group responsible for the Nov. 2008 Mumbai attacks. Indian saber rattling alone hasn’t done the trick, just as in 2002 when India’s armed forces tried but failed to intimidate Pakistan into halting the flow of jihadis into the Indian-controlled part of Kashmir. Continue reading


Filed under India, Pakistan

Pakistan: democratic governance is the only way forward

by Raza Rumi
Given the average shelf life of any civilian government, it is almost miraculous that the incumbent government has survived and there are signs that its removal is not immediate. The longevity of civilian order has less to do with the inherent strengths of its style of governance or delivery of public goods that it had promised in its manifesto. The survival of this government is an outcome of the lack of options for the establishment as well as its international allies, notably the Western powers. Leaving the conspiracy theories and the excessive over-reliance of the analysts on the American factor, we can safely argue that the military establishment of Pakistan and its intelligence agencies has found themselves in a unique situation since the assumption of the presidency by Asif Ali Zardari.

The truth is that Pakistan People’s Party, an anathema to the civil-military bureaucracy, has assumed the most important and powerful offices that a civilian government can aspire for. Two years ago, when the Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani was Continue reading


Filed under Democracy, Liberal Democratic Pakistan, Pakistan, Politics, public policy, state, Yusuf Raza Gillani, Zardari

Pakistan’s Zardari holds off his political foes — for now

President gives up some powers, faces pressure to relinquish more

By Pamela Constable Washington Post Foreign Service Tuesday, December 1, 2009

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN — President Asif Ali Zardari, fighting to keep his job amid pressure from opponents in the media, the courts, the Parliament and the military, appears to have reasserted his grip on the presidency for the time being, according to analysts here.

But Zardari’s government remains caught between pressure to support Washington in the war against Islamist insurgents in Afghanistan and the need to improve its tenuous relations with the army, which is focused on fighting domestic Taliban extremists and mistrusts the Obama administration’s friendship with India, Pakistan’s neighbor and arch rival. Continue reading


Filed under Democracy, Media, Pakistan, Politics, Zardari

PAKISTAN: Putting Development Back on the Agenda

By Beena Sarwar

KARACHI, Apr 2 (IPS) – Pakistan’s new prime minister has announced
what many term a `revolutionary’ agenda: continue the `war on terror’
but on Pakistan’s terms, lift the long standing ban on student and
trade unions, raise minimum wages, revoke `black’ media laws, provide
relief for farmers and observe austerity.

Yousuf Raza Gillani revealed his ambitious initial 100 day plan for
his government after obtaining an unprecedented unanimous vote of
confidence in the National Assembly. The plan has breathed fresh air
into this nuclear-armed South Asian nation where military-dominated
politics has long been marked by acrimony, bitterness and

A new in-house advertisement on the popular television channel Geo TV
captures the mood: clips of various politicians bantering, smiling
and laughing. The slogan, `Jeo, muskura kar’ (`Live life with a

The country that gave the world its first Muslim woman prime
minister, Benazir Bhutto, now boasts the world’s first Muslim woman
Speaker of the Assembly. Dr Fehmida Mirza, 51, thrice elected from
her hometown Badin in Bhutto’s native Sindh province, sometimes looks
startlingly like her slain leader and friend. So Gillani could be
forgiven, in his inaugural speech, for twice inadvertently referring
to her as `Madam Prime Minister” instead of “Madam Speaker”. Continue reading

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Filed under Benazir Bhutto, Citizens, Democracy, Elections, Pakistan, Parliament, Terrorism

Pakistan’s New Prime Minister

Yousaf Raza Gillani – a profile

By Amjad Warraich

LAHORE: Pakistan People’s Party’s (PPP) nominee for prime minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani, is a seasoned politician with strong background of influential political family and vast experience of local to national level politics. Presently the vice chairman of the PPP, he served as the National Assembly speaker during Benazir Bhutto’s second government from 1993 to 1996 and as a federal minister in Muhammad Khan Junejo’s government from 1985 to 1988.

Like his elders, he has wonderful electoral track record. He made first entry to electoral politics in 1983 by defeating the then federal minister Syed Fakhar Imam in the elections for Multan district council chairman. He won a National Assembly seat in 1988 by defeating Mian Nawaz Sharif, the then PML Punjab president and caretaker chief minister of the province. His uncle and a veteren parliamentarian Makhdum Hamid Raza Gillani became his victim in 1990 elections. His 2008 opponent Sikandar Hayat Bosan was also a former federal minister. The only defeat Gillani received during his 25-year electoral politics was in 1997 when Bosan outclassed him.

Arrested in February 2001 by General Pervez Musharraf government under charges of misuse of authority, he spent almost six years in prison, where he wrote a book and also improved his profile to qualify for premiership, in the absence of any Bhutto or Zardari from the National Assembly.
Continue reading


Filed under Pakistan, Parliament, Politics